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A Thank-You for a Random Act of Kindness

Every now and then on twitter, you’ll see someone post a little something with the hashtag #bekind. The most recent one I saw was a photo of someone putting extra money in a parking meter for a stranger to save them from a ticket. There is something about these acts that really warms my heart. They are not monumental, but they’re within my reach to do. And apparently to receive as well.


Last night, I was driving to the movie theatre to catch a show with my two brothers. One lives in town, one doesn’t. So it was a happy occasion to get to have time with both of them together. As I was about two minutes away from my destination, a noticed movement from the corner of my eye. I looked out my left car window and saw a woman waving frantically at me. But she looked friendly, like she was trying to get my attention to say hello or something. For a split second, I thought it was Andrea, she had long hair like her … but, I wasn’t in Westboro (and — giveaway! — this woman was in an SUV). So I rolled down my window to the stranger who told me quickly before the lights were turning: “You have a pair of shoes on the back of your car! One is still there, but the other fell off a few intersections ago!”

Hubby had used my car earlier in the day for rock-climbing and must have left a pair of shoes on the back when unloading it because just as the woman had said, there was one shoe on the ledge above the bumper. It was sitting there nicely. I grabbed it and put it in the car, but I didn’t have time to drive back to check on the other one before the movie was going to start.

After the movie, I was driving my brother Adam home and told him he was in charge of looking for a stray shoe. I explained the scenario, to which he immediately quipped, “I can’t believe she recognized them as a pair of shoes and didn’t shout ‘Hey, you left some paddles on the back of your truck!'” Nice one. (Hubby wears a size 13 shoe.)

But, believe it or not, we have both shoes back at the house now. Safe and sound. We found the missing one, sitting patiently in the middle of the intersection the woman in the SUV had told me about. (Adam made the heroic shoe rescue by sprinting out to get it when no traffic was coming.)

All in all, I’m pretty darn happy about this. Not just because it’s so hard (and expensive) to get Hubby shoes in his size. But because of the kindness of a stranger. She could have simply shrugged and gone on her merry way, but instead she took the time and energy and let me know about the paddles shoes that had been left on the back of the car.

Thanks mystery lady! You and your kindness rock.

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  1. Mary Lynn Kitaura says:

    Love that story. I have been helped by strangers and mystery people on countless occasions. There are good people out there.

  2. What a lovely story.  I find I’m always touched by unexpected kindnesses, especially from strangers.  Not sure if that’s because we take the kindnesses from those we know and love more for granted, or because we too often have a jaded view of strangers.  Either way, I’m glad the thoughtful woman helped you reclaim the shoes.

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