Thursday, May 29, 2008

Flowers for your day

On the tram coming to work this morning, I gave up my seat so that a young child who had just got on could have it. It was no big deal – I was only three stops away from work, and I've been trying to get off a stop early to stretch my legs, so it wasn't heroic at all. But it didn't quite work out as I intended.

Within moments of the mother and child getting on the tram, I had heard this little piping voice calling, "Sit dowwwwnn…" (as they do), and the mother saying, "No, you can't sit down, it's busy," (it was, very). I know what it's like to keep a young child standing upright on a busy, crowded tram, so I wanted to be helpful and considerate to the child. After all, other people had done the same for my children at various occasions.

I got up from my seat and stepped toward the mother, passed a couple of people in the way, and said – loudly enough for others to hear as well – "she can have my seat if you like." She smiled and thanked me, but as she negotiated her child passed me and a couple of other passengers, she saw that someone else had sat down in my seat!

A large man in trendoid clothes, sunglasses, and a pair of headphones clamped to his head had taken the seat I had offered for the child.

How rude! The twit. He seemed oblivious to the few glares thrown at him by various people around us who realised what happened, but, then again, he struck me as particularly self-absorbed and lost to the little things, and little people, going on around him. By that point, I was too far away to say anything to him. Thankfully. Perhaps I'm being unkind, but I never really liked mirror-style aviator sunglasses.

Instead of letting this incident chew on me today, I considered how things – whether acts of kindness or utter selfishness – have a tendency to come around to you again in the long term. Including for Mr Aviator-Sunnies.

Luckily, for the little child, a woman sitting across the aisle from where I was gave up her seat for her – without fuss.

I've added the lovely flowers (above) I photographed off Block Arcade in Melbourne on Monday as an
offering for all you nice and considerate people out there – especially all of my readers – as a fillip for the day. Along with my hopes that you have a lovely day.

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