Celebrating the Random Kindness of our Neighbors

By Jean A.

Despite achy knees I walked to the local post office on Damen and Montrose, intending to send off a piece I had written for the Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s Foundations.  Few people were in the station, and I gave my envelope to the postal carrier. “A dollar fifteen,” he said.

As I swirled my hand around in the dregs of my purse, I realized I had left my wallet at home.  A woman standing directly behind me said, “I’ll pick it up.”  I was totally taken aback, embarrassed at such an oversight.  “Oh, ” she said, “I’ve done the very same thing.”  Well, with much gratitude, I accepted her generosity and said I’d put the $1.15 in the collection plate.

I walked out of the post office, struck by the random goodness of people in this big city.  I was due for a meeting in the 47th Ward office to plan for the up-coming Ward Health Fair on September 24th.  I walked into the office and, sitting at the welcome desk was the very person, Mary, who had so generously paid my postal costs.  I recognized her immediately, but she didn’t recognize me.  “This is amazing!  I can now pay you back,” (since I had returned home to get my wallet).  “Oh, no. How can you have such a good feeling for $1.15,” she replied.  I said, “You can’t even get a cup of coffee for that price.”

And that is one more of the heart-warming stories to share about this city, filled with so many other kinds of stories.  Keep these in your mind.


Forward Chicago, an all-volunteer nonprofit organization, envisions our neighborhoods as model communities for people of all ages, where residents can age in place while remaining active, engaged and influential.

Add Your Thoughts

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s