Unsought Kindness: Paying it forward (page 3) - CycleBlaze

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Unsought Kindness: Paying it forward (page 3)

Mark BinghamTo Bill Stone

I'll share one story, which, for some reason, holds more meaning for me than it seems like it should. It occurred during my 1982 bike trip, and didn't involve another cyclist, just another person. It's something I've never shared with anyone. 

I was standing in line at a fast-food burger joint behind a middle-aged woman who ordered a hamburger. She then asked the cashier how much it would cost to add cheese, and was cheerfully informed it would only cost another thirty cents. The woman looked down at the coins in her hand, then briefly glanced up at the cashier and shook her head once before returning her gaze to her hands, clearly embarrassed. After she moved on to wait for her food,  I stepped up to order. Although I was on a tight budget, I quietly asked the cashier to add cheese and said I'd pay for it.  

As we all have, I've helped people out over the course of my lifetime, sometimes in big ways and sometimes in small ways. However, this event continues to hold a peculiar significance, and I've never been able to determine why. I don't understand it, but even now, something shifts inside me when I recall the incident.  

Somehow, I think it might be the best thirty cents I've ever spent.

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3 weeks ago
Karen CookTo Mark Bingham

Hi Mark,

That's a great story, thanks for sharing it.

It is a story that is a mix of sad and inspiring--sad that someone can't afford the 30 cents for slice of cheese but inspiring that you were in the right place at the right time to make a difference.

Maybe it's a moment she always remembers too?  Wondering how divine providence looked after her so she could have her cheeseburger?

Well done!


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3 weeks ago
Leo WoodlandTo Bill Stone

We told a friend about a film we'd seen of a French family cycling on the American west coast. A car drove by and slowed as they stood beside the road in the rain. It slowed down enough that the woman became worried.

Soon the driver reversed, pulled up alongside them, lowered a window and handed out a bunch of keys.

"Here," he said, "take these. They're to my house. I'm going away for a few days and I won't need it. Make yourselves at home and get yourselves properly dry."

Our friend, who wasn't a cyclist, listened with interest, touched by the kindness of others. And when a week or two later she saw a cycling couple bedraggled in the centre of her village, she remembered the American's kindness and took them home for the night.

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3 weeks ago
Keith AdamsTo Bill Stone

I posted this story in Leo's thread about unsought kindnesses received; I now realize it would more properly have gone in this thread instead.  There's no way to delete an entry once posted but I don't have to duplicate it.

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3 weeks ago