My last blog before the weekend Random was a bit sentimental; this could be the same. But it starts with suspicion.
I reckon we’ve grown to be a suspicious lot – is that a trait of society or circumstance? Whatever; suspicion was my first reaction to a weird comment on my blog the other day that was completely off topic – I do get them occasionally from Randoms looking to further their own popularity.
It roughly read; Hi Ma’m, I’ve found the passport of Chelsea Mountney at Paddington station and would like to return it…..and it went on to say that if we’d like to contact him he’d make arrangements to return it.
At first I thought it was some kind of new spam or stalking and was dubious about contact. I didn’t even know my daughter had lost her passport. But then I remembered her stressy text from Paddington earlier about how she’d had to race through the station nearly missing her train.
Could it really be that a complete stranger had picked it up, gone to the trouble of googling to track us down, and would put himself out enough to return it? I rang my daughter who was doing some filming in London that day. She was shocked at what I told her as she hadn’t missed it yet. But she checked – it was gone from her bag.
Several texts with this complete stranger later proved it to be genuine. Mine were full of gratitude and thanks for the trouble taken. He sounded surprised at that and said that where he came from honesty was taught from birth!
He’d obviously looked round my site too and in further texts expressed his admiration for home schooling. He also said that as parents we all have the chance to raise our children with this sort of kindness and honesty and thus a chance to change society!
I felt moved by his trouble and kindness all day. And maybe a little ashamed of my earlier suspicions. And wondered; are we all suspicious because it is so rare to experience or express this sort of random kindness?
Perhaps because of media coverage we are scare mongered into being more wary than openhearted. Maybe in our desperation to protect our children from stranger danger we have sacrificed the idea of being helpful to each other. Maybe, despite the wonders of our global communication through the Net, it has also made us too anxious to consider kindness.
Perhaps we have to get a little braver.
And I felt uplifted by the kindness shown to us. Am going to make sure I pass it on.
And that’s what I hope this story will do. Plus offering a reminder that while we are raising our children to be wise about the contacts they have with the wider world, we also need to teach them to be kind. Talk to them. And make sure we are kind every day to each other – even to strangers. Because if kindness is what you’re teaching it will change the entire focus and feel of what you do not just for today but for the tomorrows too.
And the passport? It arrived by post just two days later as promised.