While we were sitting there talking and helping to market her lumpia, longaniza, and other filipino food event, a neighbor walked over. This shirtless man wearing only denim jeans and sporting his cane came over slowly. His long white hair tied back in samurai style and goatee reminded me of a person I used to work with a few years ago. He walked straight over to my friend and said in a very quiet and calm voice, "Last week while you were here, I overheard you talking about your car needing new tires." He handed over a bundle of cash to her and said, "Here. I want you to go to Firestone and get new tires, please." All we could see was a twenty dollar bill. She dared not even open the wad of cash at the time. We both looked at each other completely speechless.
She said, "Uncle, I can't take this." He said, "Please, please take it. Go to Firestone and get new tires ok?" She responded, "Ok, Uncle. I will thank you." He started tearing and his face was turning red. "Are you ok uncle?" "No, I'm not", he replied as he tried to hold back his emotion. "But it's ok. Just go take care of your car." "OK, I will thank you Uncle so much".
He walked away quietly back to his house. We sat there and stared at each other with tears in our eyes trying not to burst into waterfall mode. We couldn't figure out why on earth he would do such a thing. I asked her how much was in there and I opened the wad. He gave her $140!!
The week prior, she was talking to her uncles to see if they could get tires for her at the junkyard that were still in good condition because she didn't have the money for new tires. Two of her tires were really bald. The neighbor overheard this conversation and paid it forward to her today. We were both so flabbergasted we couldn't cry. We couldn't say anything but wow and oh my god...why?
She told me she had gone back to church and now prays a lot. As soon as she went back to church, she noticed little blessings here and there in her life. Today, was a huge one. She drives her daughter in that car and safety is an issue. We don't know what prompted him to dish out the money for her but she was extremely thankful. I reminded her all day today to make sure she got it done....for him. Not so much for her. Bad, huh?
Later that day she found out he has cancer. Perhaps he wanted to pass out blessings before his time comes, who knows. But this man seriously put hope back in our hearts that people out there do give a damn and DO have good hearts. It was an amazing thing to witness.
I jotted down his address. I don't know his name. But I plan on paying something forward to him...very soon.
Have you ever paid it forward? Or has someone paid it forward to you? If you have not, start. It doesn't have to be big and grand. A little thing like paying for someones cup of coffee at Mcdonalds. It'll make you feel like a million bucks. I promise.