Wednesday, 21 January 2015

ways to thank life...

Yesterday was a rushed morning for me. After dropping my younger one off, I had 20 minutes to get to my elder one's school for her highly excited 'Terry Fox charity run'. The schools are not far from each other but the drop off routine, the hugs and the byes (for the younger one) cannot be cut short!

I normally start to get tensed in such situations and don't want to disappoint either of them. But thankfully after all the morning routines done, I was at the 2nd school at sharp 9am! Over the past few months, I have truly imbibed the 'public transport way of life' especially the buses! They never let me down. For the heavy taxi user I have been all these years, am a recent convert and seem to enjoy this mode a lot. It gives me a sense of belonging and a perfect way to live modestly. 

Seeing our lifestyles today, I feel my kids need to value things they have and have a down to earth attitude. Getting onto a bus or train is one small way (I feel), that could help them be a bit grounded, toughen them up and get them to think and value what they have. The pain of waiting for a bus, the pain of standing while traveling, seeing all kinds of people around (old and young), gets them to ask me a lot of questions. Thankfully I live in a country where this mode of transport can be used extensively (and all kinds of people use it).
7-11 store near school

Anyway I was done with the Terry Fox Run and was set to get back home. I normally  make a pit stop at the convenience store opposite my daughter's school (for a quick bite). For the past two years, its been the same lady who has been manning that store. Well she's not any ordinary lady like u and me. For one, she can't speak a word and takes more than 5 minutes to figure out how much change she has to return back to us! The first time I saw her I was shocked for a moment and then thankful (to life for all that it has given me!). She has a little piece of paper next to her, and she struggles to calculate the change (mind you she doesn't use a calculator) and tries hard to mutter it back to you while returning the money. She even only points to a carry bag to check if you need one!

So yesterday when I landed at the payment counter, she was not her usual elusive self. She was smiling a lot. I found that a bit strange, as in the past she wouldn't even lift her head while interacting with you. There was a sudden confidence in her dealing. She even muttered a few words trying to ask me if I wanted a carry bag. And then came the biggest surprise- She managed to say 'Thank You' to me after giving me my change! This time I was truly shocked. I don't know what brought about that change in her, but the smile said it all. It was probably her biggest victory. Whether her job at that store helped her, or she just started talking, her life had surely moved manifolds.

At the breakfast table this morning, I had to tell my daughter about this lady. Having been to that store with me several times, she also distinctly remembered that this lady was not like us! Of course her reaction was, next time we go that side, can we drop by at that store?

And again I tried to remind her, that everyday we need to be thankful for everything we have! For that lady, well I will make sure that every time I visit school, I make a pit stop and buy something from her store!

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