The Kindness of Strangers

Something happened to me today. I was out running errands near our local community college, and I stopped at a red light. From four of five cars back, I saw something horrible. An older man with a cane was on the ground in the middle of the crosswalk of a very busy street. I didn’t see him fall, so I don’t know exactly what happened, but thankfully no one had hit him–he had fallen on his own. Before I could even take it in, four or five college students rushed out to him to help him up. People stopped their cars and jumped out to help him. Two students acted as crutches for him to carry him safely across the street and help him to sit down. Thankfully, there was no blood or sign of serious injury. Those students leaned down to talk to him and make sure he was all right.

I was in tears. To see such beauty unfold right in front of me. For a long time I used to have this really powerful and equally irrational fear that something bad would happen to me when I was out by myself somewhere, and no one would help me. Thankfully, I don’t feel that way anymore, and today reminded me of that, so powerfully. People are good. People are kind. We all owe so much to the kindness of strangers. And we can all be that kind stranger ourselves.

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