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Kindness is a gift without a price tag

By Jean Brody

It costs nothing to be kind.

Acts of kindness can, at most, cost you time.

But, guess what? Most of the time your kindnesses affords you such pleasure that monetary costs are rarely even noticed and, you know what else? There are no such things as unimportant kindnesses.

All good deeds and thoughts are important both to the giver and the receiver.

On one of our trips abroad, Gene and I went to Ireland. We crossed on the ferry from England, our little rented car in tow, and when we landed very early the next morning, off we went.

Happily, we headed for the rather remote rural B and B inn we had reserved long in advance.

We had planned to check in, rest a bit and then take off in our little car and see as much of Ireland as possible.

So we were bouncing along this very rural back road.

Have you ever been there? Let me tell you, the roads in Ireland are awful! The idea of routine road maintenance seemed to be way down on their list of priorities and the further you get away from the bigger cities, the worse the roads get.

We slowed way down and were diligently trying to avoid the deep ruts and pot holes but, alas, we hit two deep ruts at one time, blowing two of our four tires into flying rubber. Oh, my heart sank.

Here we were on a Saturday morning, very early to be knocking on a complete stranger’s door to ask to use the telephone to get help.

We walked and walked, stumbling on the rocks in the road and finally there was a little square house amidst a stand of trees. Realizing how early it was to disturb anyone, we still had no choice.

A few soft taps on their door brought two apple-cheeked, pajama-clad little boys to open it. We asked to use their phone and immediately they ran to fetch their unshaven, sleepy poppa.

He emerged, yawned and when he heard our story, he scratched his belly and handed us the phone.

He told us who to call and we were told someone would come out in several hours.

Well, this Irish gentleman said he realized we were tourists and had reservations, therefore, why didn’t we take his car on to the inn and when our rental car had two new tires on it, he would drive it to the inn to us and return home in his own car.

Frankly, I thought we heard him wrong. We, perfect strangers to this man, were being offered his own car to use while he got ours in running order.

Surely he either didn’t say that or there would be a big charge for it all.

There was no charge.

His genuine kindness was for real. He would take nothing for spending his Saturday helping two strangers. Of course we sent a big box of gifts to them when we got home.

That exemplary kindness is one I shall never forget. In fact, I believe it was the highlight of that trip to Ireland.

I try to remember that kindness costs nothing and is never unimportant.

I pray I never pass up the chance to do a kind thing for another.

The view from the mountain is wondrous.

Jean Brody is a passionate animal lover and mother. She previously lived in Winchester, but now resides in Littleton, Colorado. Her column has appeared in the Sun for more than 25 years.