Random Act of Kindness on BART

Today I had a date with a writer in San Francisco.  I awoke as I have been doing lately, around four o’clock in the morning.  Why am I not going back to sleep?  I have no idea.  I wish I could, for the next hour or two often give me the best dreams and the best time for my creativity to work. 

(Yes, you can actually be creative during your dream time . . .)

So I got up and took care of housekeeping chores and writer business before it was time to take BART to meet my writing partner.  We had a productive day, and when it was time to head back home, I hopped on BART (Bay Area Rapid Transit) and immediately closed my eyes and thought about all of the creative ideas we had discussed. 

Oops.  My dreamtime kicked in accidentally.   I nearly slept through my stop!  I awoke with a start and searched for my BART ticket.  It was nowhere to be found.  In my sleepy haze, I couldn’t seem to find it anywhere.  I had been holding it.  Did it disappear as I slept?  Jump out of my hands and exit the door before me? 

The man sitting next to me noticed my problem and offered a spare ticket he had.  “It has $6.45 left on it.  Better than nothing,” he said. 

“Thank you so much!” I handed him $7.00.

“No,” he pushed the money back into my hands.  “I insist.  Just take the ticket.”

What a kind man.  I smiled.  He was giving me a random act of kindness! 

I put the money in his hands and looked him in the eyes.  “Thank you SO MUCH.  But I can afford this.  Instead, give it to someone who needs it.” 

He nodded and smiled back. 

Exercise:

1.  It’s your turn.  Have you ever received a random act of kindness from someone?  Write about it in your journal, for an assignment, or share it here. 

2.  Write about a random act of kindness you were able to give to someone else.

3.  Now go out and DO a random act of kindness ON PURPOSE.

P.S.  I found my original BART ticket in the outside pocket of my purse after I really woke up.  Right after I got off one stop too early . . . and had to wait fifteen more minutes for the NEXT train.  Reminder:  do NOT fall asleep on BART.

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4 Responses to “Random Act of Kindness on BART”

  1. Poe Says:

    I was walking down the famous Mist Trail in Yosemite National Park. This trail takes you right alongside a huge waterfall and believe me you get WET. On a hot day, it’s most pleasurable, but I was getting near the end when I had to stop. My glasses were so soaked, I couldn’t see–dangerous considering the slippery wet steps. I stepped off the trail a bit and considered. My clothes were sopping wet. What would I dry my glasses on?
    Then a woman just starting up the trail saw me and called, “Would you like to dry your glasses on my skirt?”
    My hero! I said, ”Yes, I would!”
    It felt a little weird, doing something so intimate with a total stranger, but in a moment, my glasses were dry.
    Where are you today, oh wondrously kind lady? May you be blessed with a life of total joy.

    • lizbooks Says:

      What a fabulous Random Act of Kindness! It was also sooo instinctual for her to realize you needed this action. And for her to be completely comfortable for a stranger to do this takes another level of giving. Thanks for sharing this moment of giving. Gives us all hope.

  2. Mary Koehler Says:

    I enjoyed this story! (Hadn’t looked at your blog for awhile.) Was this your day with E?

    I took a trip to Rhode Island by myself on the train in 1969. I had dinner in the dining car. I must have looked as inexperienced and naive as I was then. An older woman kindly told me that if I left my money on the table the waiter would pick it up. It’s a kindness remembered.

    • lizbooks Says:

      Thanks Mary! It’s a great anecdote. Yes, it was my day with E. It’s funny about these random acts, because once we start looking for them, we can find them all around us in little ways that are very encouraging. (In our dreams too. )

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