Peace, Good Will


‘Tis the season of frantic shoppers, aggressive drivers, wild-eyed bargain hunters and parking lot fender benders. The newspapers are full of stories of selfishness and greed and down-right bad manners. As an antidote, I’m collecting stories of generosity, selflessness, and kindness.

For the month of December I’ve got “good deeds” on my radar. Not the seasonal ones like serving dinner in a homeless shelter, or putting a float in a parade, or being a secret Santa to a shut in. Those are certainly good deeds and kudos to everyone to participates in those kinds of activities.

But for the purposes of this blog, I’m collecting  small acts of kindness, the unorganized kind. The kind that spread the Christmas Spirit everywhere and anywhere, even in unexpected places.

  • Story One: While waiting in a line-up outside Tim Hortons I encountered a young dad taking his little hockey players out for hot chocolate after an early morning practice. Reason enough to give him a pat on the back. But, he went further. He talked to a young man sitting on the sidewalk. Asked if he was hungry, exchanged names, then offered to bring him a breakfast sandwich. The young man on the sidewalk opted for a donut instead. The dad obliged, even after trying to talk the young man into a healthier choice. I was so uplifted by that dad’s good deed, I emptied my purse into a collection box when I finally reached the counter.
  • Story Two: I lost a prized jacket. Searched the house top to bottom several times. Looked in the most unlikely of places. Retraced my steps. Finally, in a last ditch effort, I called the airport. I was sure I hadn’t worn the jacket when I went to the coffee shop there, but  I was ready to try anywhere. Lo and behold, I did wear the jacket and left it hanging on a chair. Some honest soul found it and turned it in to lost and found. Two days after the jacket went missing, the commissionaire produced it from a back room and restored it to me. I am so very grateful to the people who enabled me to get my coat back. It would have been so easy just to walk away with it.
  • Story Three: I needed to make a left-hand turn mid-block. An oncoming vehicle stopped, allowing me to turn and freeing the line of traffic jammed up behind me. Thank you lady driver. You are a remedy for all the angry drivers out there who drive down the shoulder, cut in and out of traffic and steal parking spaces. I hope you have a Merry Christmas and that your act of kindness inspires others.

So, that’s my list for this week. Watch for more as I celebrate the Christmas season. Please share your own story of peace and good will in the comments section. Let kindness reign!

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  1. Carlene

    A few years back when the parking commissionaire was writing up a ticket because the meter had run it’s time I quickly put a loonie in the meter. Then left a note on the person’s windshield to pass it on. It was good to give back for all the little surprises over the years that strangers did for me. ?

    • Alice Valdal

      Pay it forward can produce lovely surprises,

  2. Jodie Esch

    This week in my water exercise class, all of us warmly greeted a participant’s mother. She was 94 and it was her first class.
    After the class, the mother commented that if she’d known that everyone would be so friendly, she would have started attending the class sooner in her life. A nice moment.

    • Alice Valdal

      Lovely, Jodie. Thanks for passing on that bit of cheering news.

  3. Laura Langston

    I love your post! It sparked conversation over dinner about random acts of kindness and paying it forward. I’ve been shopping much more than usual lately and noticing the crowds, both in the stores and on the roads. Twice yesterday in very heavy traffic other drivers stopped to let me in. On another occasion, a stranger helped me as I struggled through a door with a heavy parcel. Your blog started me thinking and watching . . . and looking for my own opportunities to offer up random acts of kindness.

    • Alice Valdal

      Great stories, Laura, and I love that one act of kindness can inspire another, and another, and . . . Thanks for your comment.

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