Has a random act of kindness stayed in your memory forever?

(310 Posts)
CrushWithEyeliner Mon 18-Feb-08 20:09:17

Once when I was 21 I was on the tube going home after work when I suddenly felt really really awful and had to get off the train. I wandered up to the ticket barrier when a guard saw me and asked me if I was OK. I was feeling so faint I couldn't even talk I just said I felt sick. He then took me into the back room where he and his colleagues made me sweet tea, toast and talked to me for ages until I felt better then called me a cab home, they were really concerned.

I know it sounds really silly but I have never forgotten how sweet they were to me and how much better I felt for it and it was so long ago and such a little thing - does anyone have any similar experiences?

policywonk Mon 18-Feb-08 20:17:11

I was once walking down a street (in Brixton), and a woman carrying a massive bunch of flowers was coming the other way. As we passed, she just said 'Here, have these' and put them in my hands. I was mighty chuffed. She, on the other hand, looked very cross, so my guess was that they were an unwanted bunch from some worthless male. Very much appreciated by me though!

ChorusLine Mon 18-Feb-08 20:22:39

DS was about 6 weeks and was in BHS cafe and the queue was huge and i started to cry (blushyes i know) a staff member who was tidying up saw me made me sit down and gave me waitress service - then i cried some more. Shepherds pie never tasted so great through salty tears!!!!!

snowleopard Mon 18-Feb-08 20:28:49

I was cycling home from a fruit-picking holiday when I was 17 (very stubborn, independent and stupid) and it started pissing down and I headed for a Little Chef to shelter... but on the way up the road to it I passed a caravan and a group of squaddies invited me in! - they had an older leader with them so I figured it was OK (verrry naive) but it was ok - they gave me hot beans on toast and the return half of a train ticket that would get me almost all the way home. They were doing a sponsored walk from John O'Groats to Land's End and didn't need the return.

They were so nice and I was such a lefty militant type who thought all soldiers were bastards. Taught me a lesson.

abouteve Mon 18-Feb-08 20:28:50

I was in a queue at a cafe and a lady in front of me didnt get a tray and was struggling with cups and plates. I just went a got her a tray and she gave me a little laminated poem about kindness. She was obviously religious and I kept it in my purse. I thought it was so sweet argh.

ivykaty44 Mon 18-Feb-08 20:31:39

The lady in Porlock who lent me and my partner her mini to go and get my car from cloutsham. I had never met her before and she didn't know me from adam yet gave me her car keys and said off you go.

So if you are that lady in Porlock who was working in the hotel that afternoon - ooo about 12/13 years ago thank you very much

OrmIrian Mon 18-Feb-08 20:32:50

When I broke down on the main road through town - rush hour, chucking it down with rain, 3 DCs in car - on the way to CMs with youngest 2 DCs and then on to school for DS#1 and work for me. Blocked a lane of a budy road and got a bit of beeping and yelling for my trouble blush. I hadn't a mobile at the time so was about to go to the nearest store (B&Q) to ask to borrow their phone when man (with daughter)in car stopped and towed me all the way to the CMs house. Then took me and DS#1 to school and took me back to CMs house to wait for recovery vehicle. Wonderful man! It makes me keener to do thing for others when you know how kind others can be.

NutterlyUts Mon 18-Feb-08 20:35:26

Aged 11, lost at the big secondary school. A 6th former saw me looking like a rabbit in a headlights, stopped to ask if he could help, and directed me to the playground. Never forgotten that, even though it wasn't anything big.

avenanap Mon 18-Feb-08 20:38:38

I was working in a pub when I found out I was pregnant. My boyfriend had just dumped me, I was living in student acommodation and was in debt. A customer who came in every day saw me in another pub and brought my lunch. Then he gave me a blank cheque and told me I could cash it for anything up to 1k. I was so shocked. No one has ever done anything nice for me before. I cried for ages. It helped me so much.

There are some really lovely people out there, I hope that lovely things happen to them back.

discoverlife Mon 18-Feb-08 20:39:50

Was in a new town, flat broke at the meat counter trying to figure out if i could afford some liver (Yes I was that broke, just moved house). When a complete and utter stranger came up to the counter and bought a joint of beef, then turned around to me and said. 'You look like you could do with this more than me' shoved it into my bemused hands and he walked away.

jammydodger Mon 18-Feb-08 20:42:11

I was in Korea, backpacking, aged 22, on my own. Got off the train at the wrong stop, so ended up in this tiny little town with no English signs and noone who spoke English. I needed a place to stay for the night, as it was getting late and couldn't find a hotel, I was starting to panic quite a lot. I asked everyone I passed "hotel?" but noone spoke any English at all.

In desperation I stopped in at a garage and this group of 5 mechanics were there playing cards. I gestured to them that I needed somwhere to sleep, said "hotel" - a few of them laughed, etc...I was really desperate. One of them led me back onto the road, stopped a taxi, gave the taxi driver some of his own money and said something to him in Korean. Gestured to me to get in. I got in (on my own, bloke stayed at the garage)..and the taxi driver took me to a lovely hotel down a little lane which I would never have found in a million years.

I'll never forget that man. What a star.

Sidge Mon 18-Feb-08 20:43:27

Nearly got arrested in San Francisco when travelling round after doing Bunacamp. We had booked a motel room for the 4 of us (as they all had 2 big beds) but the manager said only 2 of us could have the room - no idea why as the rooms were charged by the room not per person.

We disputed it with him so called the police - cue 2 scary American cops complete with snarling dogs, nightsticks, guns etc! We got our money back and left (could't afford 2 rooms) and were in effect stranded on the highway at nearly midnight.

A woman was coming back to the Holiday Inn over the road and had seen the commotion and was disgusted with the manager and police, so paid for us to have 2 rooms in the Holiday Inn and bought us breakfast too!!

A lovely lady whose name and face I can still remember - and this happened in 1991!

ghosty Mon 18-Feb-08 20:44:29

When DS was 6 weeks old he was rushed to hospital with suspected meningitis. He was under observation during the day and they decided to keep him in overnight. DH went home and I stayed with DS. By 10pm his temperature was still going up and up and he was getting really poorly so they decided to do a lumbar puncture. I was beside myself, called DH to get him to come back to the hospital, and then stood in the hallway sobbing - I was terrified.
A lovely lovely lady just came up to me, took me in her arms and cuddled me like I was a child. She then took my hand and led me to the kitchen where she made me a cup of tea and let me sob on her shoulder while she patted my back and soothed me. DS didn't end up having Meningitis (thank god) and I never found out the lady's name ... I thought she was a volunteer or a helper of some kind. But I found out later that she was a parent and her baby had never left the hospital after birth and was never likely to leave sad
I hope so much that where ever she is in the world she is being rewarded for her kindness. I will always be grateful to her. She was an angel.

ivykaty44 Mon 18-Feb-08 20:46:03

Oh and one of the mums at school asked me if I wanted her old car cos they were going to take it to the scrap heap? Mine had broken down and I was 7 months pg and needed a car to get to the hospital to visit my mum.

That was such a lovely thing to do I loved that car - speedo didn't work it jumped around between 20 miles per hour and 60! had no interio light but it was great.

snowleopard Mon 18-Feb-08 20:48:33

Oh yours has made me cry ghosty! What a great thread.

rantinghousewife Mon 18-Feb-08 20:49:16

Was on a train with ds, who was about 2 at the time and he was playing up big style. Some woman was getting the right hump with me 'Can't you stop that child crying!'. And I burst into tears, some lovely lady took pity on me, she calmed ds down, bought me a cup of tea from the buffet car and sat and kept ds occupied whilst I snivelled into my tea. If anyone knows her, can they tell her he managed to grow up okgrin

lisalisa Mon 18-Feb-08 20:49:50

Message withdrawn

cocolepew Mon 18-Feb-08 20:50:36

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AnotherFineMess Mon 18-Feb-08 20:50:44

Excellent thread cwe.

I have been overwhelmed by how kind people have been when I've been out, struggling with 2 under 2. The most unlikely looking people have carried buggies down steps, carried trays, rearranged themselves on buses to give me more room and just said the loveliest things about my children, me and breastfeeding.

I also had a thunderbolt a couple of weeks ago - DH and I have a special anniversary coming up and wanted to book a weekend away - really couldn't afford it but booked it anyway and walloped it on the credit card. The very day after we'd booked we got a cheque theough the post from old friends who we haven't seen for years for the EXACT amount of the weekend away. We hadn't told a soul how much it cost - how incredible is that!!!

cocolepew Mon 18-Feb-08 20:52:20

Sorry, I had written a post but the bloody computer seems to have eaten it.

sagacious Mon 18-Feb-08 20:52:22

Fifteen years ago
A traindriver who found me passed out drunk at the end of the line at 1.30am, threw me over his shoulder (literally) and stuck me in his cab, found out which station I should have been at and dropped me into a cab then getting back in his train to go all the way back to where he should have dropped the train in for cleaning.

I remember him saying he'd get a bollocking for doing it but he had a daughter a similar age.

Bless him

PollyPentapeptide Mon 18-Feb-08 20:52:30

When I was 17, I did my first journey alone in a recently purchased old banger down the M25 to go to a friends house. About 20 minutes into the journey, I broke down on the hard shoulder. I had no money, no phone and no idea what the hell to do and it was pissing down - obviously!!!

A big scary, hairy trucker pulled over and offered to take me to my friends house and arranged to get the car towed. He could see that I looked quite nervous about acepting a lift from a stranger but basicaly told me there was no way he was lwaving me there on my own.

So I got into the cab of his truck and he phoned his 70 year old mum on his mobiile so that I could chat to a friendly women and not feel so scared!

So thank you to Bryan the trucker and Edna his lovely mum who calmed me down and told me some very saucy jokes to take my mind off things grin

staryeyed Mon 18-Feb-08 21:16:43

Well when I was much younger about 7 or 8, I was a bit of a tomboy and a bit of a dare devil. I climbed a tree and my brother said I should cross the branches to get to another tree. Having no common sense I agreed. I got stuck in the middle of the two trees on the flimsiest branches and froze too scared to go either way. This really nice man passed and asked if I was ok. My brother explained what happened and he rushed to get his ladder and climbed up and got me down.

lucylala Tue 19-Feb-08 02:36:56

aww, am loving this thread - more please!!

My is sad but nice...

Last year I was in hospital with suspected miscarriage. I ended up in gyny ward just 'waiting' for the miscarriage to happen over a couple of days. The other women in there were all in their 50/60's and were having.

On the morning I lost the baby, it was really early, staff were lovely but basically said I could get dressed and go home. I was standing behind my curtains round the bed, desperately not wanting to make a sound when the one of the other women stuck her head in and just said 'oh love'....and held her arms out...I burst into tears and she just held me and stroked my hair and then one of the other women went and got me a cup of tea...it was lovely - like having a load of mums looking after me! Made me think 'aww, aren't women brilliant!'

lucylala Tue 19-Feb-08 02:39:37

just thought of another one...

I went to London for first time, on my own, and was trying to get across london on the tube at rushour. I had no idea what I was doing and it seemed total mayhem.

A tube pulled up and everyone piled on and I was waiting my turn on the platform politley (didn't realise it was every man for himself).

I must have been looking a bit confused and dithery cos all at once I felt a huge hand on the back of my collar and I was literally dragged onto the tube as the doors shut. It was a man in a suit who just decided to help me 'assert' myself!

What a star!

Califrau Tue 19-Feb-08 06:22:21

on the day I graduated someone gave me and my friends their parking voucher - just cos we looked so happy. tiny but still makes me smile.

I had a nightmare time when I was just 18. I went to the Costa Brava to au pair for a psychopath with hepatitis b. I had no idea the woman was nuts until I got there. I ended up grabbing my worldly goods and making a run for it in the night. I made it to Barcelona and was headed to Burgos to stay with the Spanish assistant from my school the year before - the only person I knew in the whole of Spain (random act of kindness 31 - her taking me in from a random and desperate phone call). I had FAR TOO MUCH luggage and there was a taxi strike so I couldn't get from where my bus arrived to the train station. I ended up dragging my cases sobbing (2 cases and massive ruck sack - I was v naive and v young and v stupid for taking that much) a young fella stopped me and offered to help. He put on my rucksack and took the heavier case, came with me all the way to the station, bought me food, sat with me til my train arrived, put my luggage on the train for me then waved me off. I don't even know his name but he was a complete lifesaver.

lovely thread.

Flllightattendant Tue 19-Feb-08 06:49:29

One puts oneself at the mercy of strangers when one travels naively and alone.
I was lost in Italy for about 3 weeks when I dropped out of school. So many people were kind.
One night in Rome I was watching the procession of costumed opera singers as they made their way into the Opera house...some guards gave me a ticket, for free. It would have cost hundreds.
Another day I was looking for hotel work and a very sweet old woman 'interviewed' me as she cleaned a bedroom on a top floor...we established that I did not have a visa to work so wouldn't be able to, but as I left she called out 'ciao, Bella' which touched me as I felt such a mess and hadn't changed my clothes for weeks. smile
(They say Bella to everyone i think, but still!)
Then coming slowly home, I ended up stranded one night in Genoa after having to get off the train due to a very scary man sitting in my compartment. It was a port town, really rough - I wandered a few streets with my huge backpack, very quickly realising it was not a place to be alone at night.
The police stopped and took me to a hostel, where there were no rooms but a little cubicle magically appeared and I was safe till morning.
No, I don't think I'll forget these things as long as I live!

belgo Tue 19-Feb-08 06:51:43

it's very interesting reading this thread.

GooseyLoosey Tue 19-Feb-08 06:52:37

When I was nearly 8 mnths preg and starting the very long commute home, there were no seats on the train. The guard told me to stand, but a lovely gentleman bought me a first class ticket (without me even being aware of it at the time).

Also thanks go to the 2 lovely ladies who when I fainted on the platform having run for (and missed) a train during same pregnancy, opted not to get on their own trains but to buy me a cup of tea, wait for my next train and sit with me all the way home.

ghosty Tue 19-Feb-08 07:02:07

Lisalisa ... don't tell me it was you??? That would be completely and totally bizarre ... shock
It was January 2000 in East Surrey Hospital in Redhill.

GooseyLoosey Tue 19-Feb-08 07:03:21

Oh, one other one, infact it was probably a defining moment in my life.

I once fell out with the head teacher when I was doing my A levels over a decision of my parents. He said that in consequence, the (state) school would no longer support me in my application to Oxford, unless I conveyed a particularly unpleasant message to my parents. I refused and walked out of the school in tears vowing never to discuss the incident with my parents but believing my future potentially in tatters.

Before I had even reached home, one of my teachers rang my parents to congratulate them on the loyalty of their daughter and pledging his support to them and me. He then proceeded to get many of the other teachers to support me at the cost of his own relationship with the school. I did get in to Oxford and it was in part down to the dedication and support of those teachers.

Vulgar Tue 19-Feb-08 07:21:25

I love this thread.

I love the fact that so many of the stories involve a cup of tea! grin

Miaou Tue 19-Feb-08 07:29:26

Here is mine. It happened about 8 years ago. I took dd1 (then 3) to a local gala. By the gate was a man selling helium balloons and dd1 asked if she could have one. I said I would buy her one when we left, on the way home. She waited very patiently for her balloon at the gala but was getting more and more excited about it (bless). Naively, I thought that they cost about £1 so imagine my shock when I was told they were £4.50 each!! I didn't have enough money for one - poor dd was so upset. She held it together until we had gone about 10 yards away but then burst into tears. While I was consoling her I felt a tap on my shoulder - and the balloon man silently handed me a balloon. Dd1's face (and mine) were just a picture! She was so thrilled with the balloon and it lasted about three weeks too smile

AbbeyA Tue 19-Feb-08 07:51:39

What a lovely thread! I am sitting here with tears running down my cheeks, especially with the hospital ones.
I was on a long distance train journey trying to breast feed a howling 3mth old baby, and getting more and more uptight, when the lovely lady opposite said not to worry she had breastfed in 1947 an old fashioned carriage full of men commuting to London.(they had all retreated behind their newspapers.)I felt so much better after that and was able to relax and consequently DS able to feed and stop crying.I was going from south coast to Scotland and remained confident even after she got off.

mrsruffallo Tue 19-Feb-08 08:06:34

This thread had made me cry!!!
No matter how often we are told the opposite the world can be a good and kind place....
I was travelling in Mexico and I ran out of money. I was trying to ring my mum and I couldn't get through and I just burst into tears.
A lovely Canadian man came up to me and asked what was wrong. He then handed me a wad of money, gave me a hug went on his way
So kind, I have never forgotten it

vonsudenfed Tue 19-Feb-08 08:13:48

The one I always think of wasn't for me at all.

We were on holiday in the UK, and driving through a town, can't remember which one. On this one way-system a cat had been knocked down. I didn't see it happen, but the cat was just lying in the road. But a woman was crouched next to it, amongst all the traffic, stroking it while it died. For some reaoon I will never forget that. Just writing it has made me cry.

chrissnow Tue 19-Feb-08 08:16:30

Now lets see if I can type through all these tears . . . Was travelling on the tube with DH dd1 (2.5) and dd2 (1.5) DD2 was fine happy on daddy's hip looking at all the people (she's a nosy one) but dd1 *freaked out* (she's shy anyway I think the madness just tipped her over the edge) A big old guy who was sat over in the corner seat basically moved everybody out of our faces (as much as he could) helped me pop her down on his seat and stood behind us the entire rest of the journey keeping everybody from crowding her. He didn't speak much English but just smiled at us on the way out and gave us a little wink. Never forget him.
I think we should all do a random act of kindness for someone who looks like they need it today and keep that karma going round. Its really not such a bad world we live in - lets keep it that way (sorry gone all poetic and soppy now)

hazygirl Tue 19-Feb-08 08:34:47

ill never forget when jayden died my parents in there seventies, my mum is unsteady on her feet,went to say goodbye its a long walk to a and e to chapel of rest , so sister went and made cup of tea then carried jayden from chapel of rest to them just snuggled in a blanket,and she ws so good to my dad who was sat sobbing hi heart out, i will never forget her kindness,and the way she treat jayden as long as i live

I had just found out I was pregnant and was ridiculously emotional; I worked in an inner city public library, when one particularly nasty piece of work decided that his fine was somehow my fault (he had a bit of a screw loose). He screamed and screamed at me, leaning right over the counter and threatened me. It was really busy and I could see everyone in the library looking at me as I struggled to stay calm and asked him to leave. One of the regulars came and stood by the counter. I was so embarrassed, finally he left throwing a final, "Watch your back" over his shoulder as he left.

I'd never known the place so quiet when he left! Then one by one everyone came up to me and told me they were so impressed with how I'd dealt with him and that they were all ready to step in to protect me if got violent. From tiny little old ladies to huge hulking men, they each offered me a little bit of human kindness. It really was a little community in itself that place.

A very bad day that made me realise just how much my job was appreciated by those around me smile

yurt1 Tue 19-Feb-08 08:44:00

OK a daft one, but I was moving back to the UK after living in Japan and I lugged a huge picture to the PO to send back home. It was far to heavy to carry, in the middle of a hot Japanese summer. I arrived and they said I couldn't send it because it wasn't packaged well enough. So my bottom lip started quivering blush- I was hot and bothered- and the guy took one look at me, walked me across to the local supermarket, got some boxes, took them back to the PO, then wrapped the parcel up for me! I've never forgotten that.

I also tend to remember people who are kind when things are kicking off with ds1 in public. The latest one over Xmas was mentioned in a thread. We had to queue in tesco. DS1 was screaming and hitting himself and the woman behind me held my stuff for me "I think you need 2 hands", and then just let me know that she knew what was happening and why. I'm not sure whether she was another parent or had worked with children with learning difficulties but she just said 'It's OK I know what it's like'.

That's lovely hazygirl

bubblagirl Tue 19-Feb-08 08:51:59

when i was very heavily pregnant and at bus stop all the old people kicked all my shopping all over the place to get on bus pushing me out the way also

every one got on and my shopping was every where i was in tears as couldnt bend down to pick it up i was huge no one offered to come and help me

disabled lady coming along struggling herself helped me pick it all up it really touched my heart

driver in meantime had got off bus carried all my shopping on had stern word with them all about there actions and dropped me at my front door even carrying shopping bags up for me

never seen a bunch of frail looking people sprint so fast onto a bus knocking over heavily pregnant woman and shopping then have the cheek to moan about the youngsters these days

thank you very much to the kind disabled lady and bus driver

Just after my beloved Grandma died, (who I lived with) I was at the solicitors wioth my Mum and my aunt and uncle. My A&U were desperate to get their hands on my grandma's house, and me and my mum were fuming about it. Anyway, they made the appointment with the probate solicitor the day after my Gran's funeral angry My uncle (who is a cunt) said that I used my Gran's house as a "dosshouse" and that I was alwayus off gallivanting (I was living away at the time - I used to go home every other weekend to help my mum, as my Gran was gravely ill) This was while he sat in the solicitors reading a holiday brocure angry x8736283746

Anyway, I pushed the brouchure in his face and stormed out and sat outside this solicitors in the centre of Birmingham and sobbed. This lovely man came and sat next to me and had a chat, and put his arm round me. He really was lovely. He listened to me whiule I looked a state with a red tear stained face and snot gushing from my nose, and was really reassuring <swoon>

He took me to the pub across the road, and bought me a drink. I ended up going out with him for 2 years blush

Anyway, I returned the favour

Last paragrapg shouls have read

He took me to the pub across the road, and bought me a drink.

Anyway, I returened the favour, as I ended up going out with him for 2 years blush

DS2 is "helping"

What a scumbag! shock (Your uncle, Sheik, not the lovely man!)

A week after I had a mc I was on the tube on my way home from the doctor's. I was exhausted and miserable and standing with my head leaning against one of the poles you can hold on to.

A man stood up and took me by the arm and led me to the seat he had just vacated, without a word. I was so grateful I wanted to cry. I also wanted to tell him what had just happened so he would know that he had really helped someone in need. I didn't. But thank you.

Hassled Tue 19-Feb-08 09:34:25

I had never been scared of heights until I took DS1 and DD (then about 5 & 3) to the "Battlements Tour" of the local castle - and had a very scary panic attack. I just couldn't move, but a lovely elderly man spent ages coaxing me along so I could get back inside while his wife looked after the kids. I would still be up on the battlements now, still paralysed with fear, if he hadn't been on the tour . And now I have a real problem with heights.

When I was about 7 I used to carry a comfort blanket everywhere (it was really just a handkerchief of a certain texture), we were on a family day out to a Koikarp fair hmm when I found a handkerchief with a beautiful embroidered fish on it for £1 (I might be sounding a little strange now grin) I begged my mum who finally consented to buy one and with beams of joy was presented with my prize!

We traipsed around all day looking at fish but when it was time to go... my handkerchief was gone. Nowhere to be found. My mum was angry because I was holding us all up as we went all the way round again looking for it (me in floods of tears). We finally got all the way back to the stall and there was no sign. Mum wouldn't let me have another as I couldn't be trusted with one.

Kindly, the lovely lady behind the stall reached over and handed me a brand new handkerchief. She said she'd never had a customer so happy to buy a handkerchief before grin

I still remember it like it was yesterday.

when ds2 was really tiny i had gone into the city with ds1, ds2 and my mil. ds2 was in his big pram-i was majorly post natal -hormones running around all over the place, and a baby body still.

we got on a bus to come home and mil took ds1 to the back of the bus and i sat right at the front with ds2 in his pram.

a horrid, filthy old drunk got on the bus and started shouting and kicking off.he kept shouting and point ing at me 'look at her! she's fucking obese!'-then went on to sout at everyone, grab a lad by the throat, wail and roar and just generally be vile. everyoe was tittering in that british way we do but i was absolutely terrified.every single one of my new mummy 'protect baby' nerves was stretched to breaking point.and i just started weeping.
i couldn't get off the bus as it was heaving and mil and ds1 were at the back and i couldn't reach them, plus we were nowhere near home and it was dark and raining.

a young, pierced, dreadlocked student who was sitting opposite me, challenged this guy told him to shut up as he as 'upsetting the girl' and then stood between us for the rest of the journey-protecting me.
what a lovely man. i hoped his mother was proud of him.

Squiffy Tue 19-Feb-08 09:58:17

A life-changing moment for me. I had just started Uni and fell in with a crowd of Hoorays, and I couldn't possibly keep up with them because my parents hadn't been able to pay their bit of the grant (dad off ill in hospital). I was flat broke and thought that I would never make any friends because I didn't have any money left. I spent the Friday night alone because they all went out partying, and I cried myself to sleep.

Next day the post arrived and in it was a cheque sent by an old friend who I hadn't seen for months. But it wasn't money though. He had written "Pay X, Twenty Thousand happy days". I learnt a big lesson and sobbed my heart out.

Wisteria Tue 19-Feb-08 10:01:44

Yes - my camper caught fire on 30th January on the A46 between M69 and Coventry on our way to Newquay for the party on fistral beach via Leamington, it was pouring with rain and I had both children with me.

We were huddled together in a lay-by waiting for the RAC, freezing, miserable and wet (although the fire had gone out I was too nervous to get back in).

A big silver car pulled up and I was petrified that we were about to be attacked but a man got out and tentatively told me not to be scared that he wasn't going to come any closer, asked if I was ok and whether I needed to use his phone; I explained that I was ok and the rescue mission was in hand but thank you - he then explained that he'd been driving the other way and saw me so went all the way up to the next roundabout to come back and check we were ok smile, he then gave me the biggest golfing umbrella you'd ever seen but refused to give me his address so that I could send it back.
I think it was a Lexus and it was millennium NY.

oljam Tue 19-Feb-08 10:25:39

I've got two; the first I was about 8 months pregnant with DS1 and travelling home from Liverpool Street, the trains were all up the spout and I had to be crammed like a sardine with everyone else. Well I started to feel very, very faint and knew I was going to faint, so I asked this guy in a suit if I could please take his seat because I thought I was going to faint. He told me if I felt that bad I should sit on the floor, and I was going to as well, until the guy with the piercings, dreadlocks, tattoos etc sat opposite him gave me his seat and gave the suit a mouthful. I was so grateful.

My second was just a few weeks ago. The local river burst its banks and the children and I had to be rescued in the night by boat and we were shown on local telly. The next day when I went to drop the kids off at school, the acts of kindness that were shown to me by the staff and parents were unbeleivable. Clothes and toys for children, a shoulder to cry on for me, loads of offers of help and assistance. The thing is we live in France and my French although passable isn't great and I do struggle to communicate with everyone at school. They were amazing, the offers of help were unbelievable, they were even going to set up a cleaning rota with all the parents to come and clean my house when the water went. I even went into a local shop to buy some pants and socks for me and the kids as we couldn't get back to the house and all the clothes had obviously been in a basket waiting to be ironed on the floor of the utility room, the shop had seen me on the telly and gave me all my stuff for free. I spent a lot of time in tears that week, but mostly it was because of the kindness of the people around me. I am so grateful to everyone in those weeks after the flood and somehow merci bien and merci beaucoup just doesn't cut the mustard, I've found myself giving hugs to virtual strangers trying to express my thanks, I think they just think I'm the weirdo English woman now. I will never forget their kindness though and hope one day that I can be as selfless to others if they're in a similar situation.

Kewcumber Tue 19-Feb-08 10:28:37

Mine was really nothing much compared to some of these.

When I was adopting DS, I saw his carers every day on our endless twice daily visits. It was difficult trying to keep a 1yr old occupied for 2 hours at a stretch in a small ante-room off the main sick bay he was in at the time.

One day two of the carers led me into the main sickbay and sat me down on a tiny childrens chair in front of a tiny table laid with food of various sorts. They made me a cup of very weak very sugary coffee and gestured at the food and told me to eat and sat and watched beaming all the time as I struggled to swallow the raw bacon fat, pickled tomatoes and potato pastries they had brought.

They were so pleased to share what they had which was really very little and so very much less really than I had. My lovely lovely ladies

My whole trip was littered with random acts of kindness.

Kewcumber Tue 19-Feb-08 10:31:17

and they bought us presents to go home with - a little pottery figure saying "don't forget Ust Kamenogorsk" (as if I could!), a little crocheted mat one of them had made and a little bib for DS. I cried blush

eidsvold Tue 19-Feb-08 10:37:31

when dd1 was in having her 1st open heart operation - another mother whose child was in ICU recovering from open heart surgery was kind enough to let us look at her little one whilst the nurse explained that this is how dd1 would be when she got back from surgery.

The mother then went to great lengths to assure me that all would be well with dd1 and that she would be fine etc.

We learnt later that the woman's baby had what dd1 had originally been tentatively diagnosed with - a heart defect that had not such a good outcome - lots of surgery and a heart transplant as teenager if they survived that long.

I felt so blessed that a mother who would face a much tougher time than me could find it in her heart to reassure me that all would be well when she had her own little one to worry about.

I now try to repay that kindness by assisting others when and where I can.

Belgianchox Tue 19-Feb-08 10:45:30

On our way home from a skiing holiday we stopped for tea at a hamburger place. When we got back to the car it had been broken into and several bags stolen. It was nighttime and freezing cold and we still had a 4 hour drive home to finish. A random man in the carpark noticed our plight, and told us to stay put. He came back with a sheet of mdf and some duck tape and proceeded to patch up our broken window just so we could get home without freezing to death. A really lovely thing to do for complete strangers.

iloverosycheeks Tue 19-Feb-08 10:54:11

When heavily pregnant and suffering from really sore back, I hobbled out to nearest chemist to ask if I could use deep heat or similar while pregnant - when young girl behind counter told me I couldn't I just burst into tears, really kind old lady chemist brought me round back of counter and into wee room, sat me down, gave me drink of water and tissues, her kindness just made me cry more. She then went off did some research and advised me what I could do for my back. She was just so concerned and motherly. Once I'd had DS I brought him in to show her and nearly starting crying again because early new born days so awful!!

theboob Tue 19-Feb-08 11:02:02

when i was having ds2 last year a hca on the ward never left my side ,she got my contractions stronger and rubbed my back and walked me up and down the corridors endless times ,showing my dh the best way to comfort me,because they were getting close she stayed with me through her break,when i came back to the ward she was the first person there to greet me and could not do enough for me my whole time there,i am thinking about this even more now as ds2 is 1 tommorow ,
did anybody feel really emotional when there dc turned 1 or is it just me being softblush
there are some lovely stories on this thread

dizzydixies Tue 19-Feb-08 11:21:26

OMG, there should be a warning on this thread so as not to read when Pg - am a complete snivelling mess, at least am not at my work

what a great thread and how humbling to read, I can't think of an example right now but am sure something will come to me when I stop sobbing!

chrissnow Tue 19-Feb-08 11:25:26

dizzy - I'm not pregnant, not recently post-natal and not PMTish and I'm still snivelling!!!

peppamum Tue 19-Feb-08 11:35:27

When I was backpacking in Australia I had a bust up with my friend and ended up on my own, and was devastated (slightly embarrassingly so - I passed out in the bar!). This Aussie lad I met in a hostel (he was on holiday) took me back to his flat, let me stay in the spare room for a few days until the only other person I knew in Australia, who lived in teh same town, was back. He showed me round and I met his mum and aunt.

When I was getting an onward coach, my friend wasn't free so he came and picked me up, drove me to the station and waved me off on the coach. I was so grateful for being seen off, it was like having family around and he didn't expect anything back off me in return. His name was Jonathon and I often think what a lovely thing that was to do for a stranger.

AbbeyA Tue 19-Feb-08 11:41:58

There are lots of nice people about.Last time I went to London with my mother I automatically went on the underground (with 2 small children in tow).I didn't think about her getting elderly until we were crammed on the platform like sardines. I knew there was no point letting a train go because it would be just as bad by the next one, but neither was I sure that she would cope standing up-however as we got on a young man instantly stood up and gave her his seat-we were so grateful.

lisalisa Tue 19-Feb-08 11:50:54

Message withdrawn

TotalChaos Tue 19-Feb-08 12:04:18

Virgin train buffet staff who were concerned that I couldn't afford to get a drink for DS (some misunderstanding, not quite sure how it happened!!), so brought out two bottles of mineral water and insisted on giving them to us for free blush

When DS and I were in hospital for prolonged jaundice, a lovely nurse who had previously done breastfeeding counselling work spent a lot of time talking and helping me out, even though technically DS wasn't one of her patients.

Lady on Dublin flight who offered to carry me bags as I was dealing with DS having a screaming tantrum when he woke up when the flight touched down.

Another MNer crying ehre!

There have been a few in my life I can think of straight away.

First one I was met of my school bus by three 'friends' who then proceeded to assault me, everythign from whipping my hands with canes and breaking my knuckles to slashing my face with glass and rubbing mud in it to 'show me'. (Apparently one of their boyfriends ahd said I was pretty), I'd been with them for about an hour, had no chance of leaving and they dragged me across a bridge where an old lady saw us and asked if I was okay. She chased them off and took me home.

Another time when pg with DS I was walking DD to nursery and I fainted, falling on top of her, about four different people tn the street I was walking down came and and picked us up and one of them drove me to the nursery and then to the doctors to my midwife.

Lastly when I was being attacked by my XP my neighbour had seen him come home drunk and came and knocked on my door, took my DD to their house and warned my XP that they would be back and expected me to be ok.

Chuffinnora Tue 19-Feb-08 13:17:24

For me I received numerous small kindness in one day which completely puts paid to the 'all Londoners are rude and selfish' theory.
Dh working in London during half term so DD, DS and myself went along for a bit of a jolly. Took tube to Science Museum and my brand new sandal fell apart making it impossible to walk. Found a heel bar and asked if he could fix it - he didn't think so but applied a strong glue to tide me over til I could buy a new pair, he wouldn't let me pay. Someone else told me where I could pick up a cheap pair of sandals close to the tube station and every set of stairs we met that day we had someone to help lift the buggy. IME Londoners are kind and helpful. The worst were the other parents with prams in the science museum pretending they didn't see the queue for the lift.

dizzydixies Tue 19-Feb-08 13:22:26

VS what a terrible things to happen to you, thank god for old ladies and neighbours

Shit happens, but in most of my really crap times someone came to my aid, gives me faith in humankind. smile

dizzydixies Tue 19-Feb-08 13:34:25

am pleased, am afraid in my job you see mostly only the 'shit happens' side of stuff, this thread has restored some of my faith in human kindness!

RubySlippers Tue 19-Feb-08 13:35:01

when i was in the very early stages of pregnancy i was working FT and i felt exhausted and rotten

One day, when i felt spectacularly bad, my colleague insisted i had a nap whilst she fielded all my phone calls and made sure no-one disturbed me

Also, all the people who gave their seat up for me on the tube when i was PG

Phono Tue 19-Feb-08 14:09:46

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

funnyhaha Tue 19-Feb-08 14:23:30

<sniff>
<Goes off to find person to inflict act of random kindness on>

CrushWithEyeliner Tue 19-Feb-08 16:41:45

bump? xx m

lucylala Tue 19-Feb-08 16:57:36

bumpity bump - come on ladies - let's keep us all smiling - great thread!

Sparkler Tue 19-Feb-08 17:50:24

I was having a down in the dumps day and Surfermum popped up on MSN. We were chatting and I told her how I was feeling. She was really supportive. I went offline and did stuff around the house. Next thing the phone rings and it's Surfermum telling me to look outside. She driven from her home and left a bottle of wine and a bar of chocolate on the doorstep with a message to cheer me up on it. It was so kind and thoughtful of her. It started me off crying again - but in a good way wink smile She's a sweetheart.

JodieG1 Tue 19-Feb-08 18:09:06

Once when I was about 17/18 and very stupid I was walking home alone at about 1am when a police car stopped
and called me over. They asked where I was going and I said home. They then asked if I realised there was a man following
me on the other side of the road. I was so shocked as I had no idea and never realised. They gave me a lift home.

When I was 14/15 I was at the hospital after my nan had taken an overdose and it was late so I decided to go home.
We lived only about 2/3 miles from the hosptial and my dad gave me money for a cab. I decided I wanted to walk to clear
my head and was about half way home when some lovely policemen in a van stopped and asked why I was so upset. I had
a chat with them and they dropped me home saying that see all policemen aren't bad.

Another time when dh was driving me to a job interview (was dp then and pre-children), a cyclist rode right in to the passenger
window where I was sat and glass went everywhere. He was going far too fast and didn't stop at a place in the road
where he should have. I was in shock and after screaming, started to sob. Dh got out the car to see what had gone on and
talk to the bloke and I got out clearly upset and shaking. A man from a coach across the road came over to see if I was ok
and gave us his full support, he was actually a former fire fighter and said the cyclist must have be going so fast
to break the window as it often took them a couple of times to break windows or cars with their hammers. He took me over to
the coach he was driving and made me a cup of sugary tea and chatted to me. He was so lovely and kind and by the end of it
I'd stopped shaking. He said it was the shock making me shake and kept asking me how I was. So nice of him.

All those people were so nice and helpful and really made me think more of human nature.

CrushWithEyeliner Tue 19-Feb-08 19:29:02

anyone else?
xx

Kindersurpise Tue 19-Feb-08 19:34:05

Lovely thread, and I am laughing at the funny British tradition of offering cups of sweet tea to combat everything.

tatt Tue 19-Feb-08 19:43:04

when OH was in a bad car accident the driver behind not only gave details as a witness but followed him home in the car (about a mile, mile and a half). He could see OH was shaken (car was a write off) and he wanted to be sure he got home OK.

I have also done one or two things that give me a warm feeling - too balance all the things I feel bad about....

JulesJules Tue 19-Feb-08 19:58:18

I'm sitting here SOBBING, it started at the cat one, and now I'm a total mess. Lovely thread. And there really is nothing like a good cup of tea, is there?

CrushWithEyeliner Tue 19-Feb-08 20:05:56

I think the cup of tea featured in my OP and has been a running theme throughout lol.
It is inspiring to hear so many lovely stories and really makes me want to do something kind for someone and "pass it on" as it were,,,,

hatwoman Tue 19-Feb-08 20:07:44

mine is so small I'm not sure it counts but it has lived with me. when I was 6 months pg with dd2 and dd1 was 18 months we thought (for some strange reason) it would be good to go to Australia. on the flight, as you might imagine, I became somewhat frazzled. i was already having a bit of an identity crisis anyway - a sort of "omg I am ruining my life, I have no idea who I am. all people see when they look at me is frazzled mum of one, soon to be two" type thing. on the flight I was exhausted, stressed, uncomfortable and all this was blowing up in particular in my mind, as I'm sure you can imagine. I walked down the plane to go to the loo and there was some sudden turbulence which made me stumble. a man held out his hand to steady me. but - so much more than that - he asked me if I was ok. and he looked at me. not my bump, not at my situation, but right at me. and there was so much care coming over in his voice - not sympathy or "omg glad I;m not in her shoes" but genuine care. It's really hard to explain - but I;m welling up now, 6 years later! just the idea that a stranger cared mattered so much. I guess I was hormonal etc etc but it was a moment I'l never forget.

geordiemacminx Tue 19-Feb-08 20:12:39

What a lovely thread.

Mine isnt much compared to most of these, had been out shopping with ds who was about 6 months, got back to the car and realised that I had a flat tyre - having had it replaced at the garage the previous day. Dp was at work, and I had no idea what to do, apart from cry - a 4x4 pulled up next to me, 4 guys got out, 2 changed my tyre, the other 2 chatted to ds and made him laugh. It was so kind of them, really restored my faith in people.

pooka Tue 19-Feb-08 20:17:07

This didn't happen to me, but happened to dh instead.
Many years ago when he was about 18 he and some friends went on a cycling holiday to Ireland. They cycled all day and then drank all evening. And so on.

One night dh drank far far too much and so did his friends. They were cycling along and dh just lost momentum and the bike keeled over with him still attached to it by the pedal clips. His friends didn't realise and cycled on to the camp site. dh lay, quite happy but perfectly immobile, in the road. And then a VW beetle rounded the bend and came to a stop. 2 women got out and managed to work out from his drunken ramblings which campsite he was staying in. He was refusing to leave the bike. So they bundled him into the car and one woman drove him to the campsite while the other woman (quite old) cycled his bike behind the car back to the campsite.

I think he was amazingly lucky to meet such generous people.

When I was wandering around a slum part of Kampala (remind me there is a reason why Lonely Planet list hotels as "budget"), some nice local man asked me what I was doing and when I told him I was looking for somewhere to eat he took me through a maze of corridors to some flats where there was some unadvertised "restaurant".

The next day when again lost in Kampala a woman asked where O was going and then not only took me to the bus station but made sure I got on the right bus.

Not mine exactly, but my mum and step-dad were in a car accident just south of the Irish border, heading north. Ambulance came to take injured step-dad to hospital just across the border and mum stayed behind to deal with the police. The police weren't allowed to take her across the border to meet SD at the hospital, so they got a bus to stop for her. Bus driver heard what happened and told the passengers he was taking a short detour and drove her right to the hospital doors. Thought that was lovely.

ChipButty Tue 19-Feb-08 20:46:55

Loving this thread.

kerala Tue 19-Feb-08 21:24:50

Just so many! There are alot of kind people out there.

Experienced many kindnesses last year when I had bad SPD and was on crutches while heavily pregnant. It hurt to walk and at one point I ended up sitting on a bench between the bus stop and my office pathetically crying. A taxi had just beeped at me for crossing the road too slowly and it was the last straw. A van driver insisted on carrying me to his van (no mean feat) and driving me right to the front door of the office.

A couple on their honeymoon who stopped and waited with my granny in the rain when she had broken down and was not in the AA, and then insisted on driving her to her destination.

My friend and I (aged 21) wandering dopily through Havana in the early evening when a motherly lady came out of her house and told us that this area was not safe and firmly directed us back to a safer bit of town.

In the middle of Mexico stupidly having spent the cash I had on me on a present then realising I didnt have enough for the bus fare back to where I was staying. A kind Canadian man paid for my ticket.

I was going out with some 'superstar dj' who had just been offered a set at Glastonbury whilst we were going out. Unbeknownst to me he dumped me and took my name off the guest list.

I hitched to Glasto and made my way to the ticket bit thingy (normally jump the fence so all a bit new to me!!) and they had no idea / note of who I was.

After a whole day of sitting there looking forlorn in the drizzle waiting for twat boyfriend to show up they took pity on me and let me in anyway with VIP pass.

That was cool.

JossStick Tue 19-Feb-08 21:40:28

Fab thread - i'm really welling up.

When i was 18 and just passed my test my battered old mini decided to break down as i was trying to turn right at a really busy junction.

Stuck in the middle of fast flowing traffic i started to panic until a couple of blokes got out of a white van behind me (shelve any stereotypes here) and helped to push my mini a nearby petrol station.

When owner of station turned out to be an utter knob and insisted in trying to fool me that it was a lack of petrol and sell me petrol. The two blokes towed me home (about 10 miles).

sigh!

funnyhaha Tue 19-Feb-08 22:43:48

Ooh, have just remembered mine grin
Flew to Oz on very cheap flight - not hugely comfortable journey. We were staying with friends who were not getting home for the evening, so then spent a day, with luggage on the beach/mooching round, wanting to go to sleep & have a shower. MAde our way towards friends house (various buses & ferries) - on our last bus journey, the driver came down to help us with our bags & started chatting/asked where we were heading. He made a detour to drop us off at our friends door smile - just totally what we needed.

Tortington Tue 19-Feb-08 22:52:18

when i was 4 my dad died of a massive heart attack aged only 37. he died in front of me and i was 4.

i obviously have limited memories as i only had those couple of years to have any memories. one of those was of my mum in a yellow bikini on a rock that kinda just came out from the bank of Llyn Padarn in Wales. my dad and i were paddling and trying to catch fish. we had a caravan there near snowdonia.

i mentioned this on a thread and MOONDOG said she lived around there. she then took her whole family on walks around the lake - which is bloody huge on a trek to find this rock and this memory of someone whom she had never met on the internet.

her family must have been exhausted - but she found it

she too ictures of it and drew a very detailsed map to it

and i went there in 2006

I was a very junior advertising person, but was invited to join some colleagues entertaining a client in Central London. I live in Wimbledon which is some way out of town.

The meal finished very late, and no provision had been made for any of us to get home. No-one else was going my way. The tubes had also stopped running by then.

I stood in Trafalgar Square for ages trying to flag a black cab, but none would stop, or were free.

Finally one cab, who didn't have his light on, stopped for me and asked where I wanted to go. He had finished for the night and wasn't going my way, but me made me sit in the back of his cab whilst he radioed for someone to come and take me home.

moondog Tue 19-Feb-08 23:25:25

Custardo it was and still is a huge pleasure and we know go there often and all call it Custardo's rock.

smile

fairyfly Tue 19-Feb-08 23:29:20

Yes, from this place, all my sons presents, it was amazing and something that cold never possibly be repeated in my life, or his.

Califrau Tue 19-Feb-08 23:29:27

<stiffled sob> at Custardo's Rock <sniff>

Califrau Tue 19-Feb-08 23:30:22

(it would have been stifled had I not been sobbing)

ninedragons Tue 19-Feb-08 23:52:04

A good friend had to fly from Singapore to Sydney on her own with a baby and a very boisterous toddler. She was dreading the oh-God-don't-sit-next-to-me stares from the other passengers, but as soon as she sat down, the 20-ish woman beside her said "You look like you could use some help. Tell me what to do!" and for the whole flight she kept the toddler amused, minded the baby while my friend took the toddler to the loo and held the baby while she ate.

My friend is quite senior in a big bank, which at her instigation now sponsors the charity for which the helpful stranger works.

Poledra Tue 19-Feb-08 23:52:44

When I was 6 months pg with dd2, I crashed my car into the back of another at a roundabout. Their car was slightly dented, my radiator was broken and spewing steam. Called insurance co. to send out towtruck, but was crying (for no good reason as I wasn't hurt). Lovely man on the phone said he would send the tow truck, he really needed more info from me but why didn't I just wait till I was home and had a chance to calm down and call back then? Then, when tow truck arrived (nearly an hour later), I was still crying. The mechanic got out of his cab, took one look at me and said 'Aw, darlin', it's only a car. As long as you and the baby are all right, it's only a lump of metal.' Then he got me into the cab of the truck and gave me a drink and a tissue before going to get the car onto the back. What a lovely man he was.

jura Tue 19-Feb-08 23:59:29

Back in the Stone Age, when I was a student, some student-y horseplay one night after the pub had ended up with me being knocked out on the street after a collision with a big bloke (friend, total accident).

After I came round, my friends propped me up on a garden wall somewhere in deepest darkest Chelsea.

Random act of kindness no.1: a voice called down from a window "I say, are you all right?" to which my friends replied, "she's been knocked out, she's a bit spaced out".
"Would you like a glass of water?"
"Yes please, that would be most kind."
"Sparkling, or still?" grin

Random act of kindness no.2: the taxi driver who, after several had refused to stop thinking I was the usual drunk (I had been drinking, but not that much wink) stopped, picked me up, took me to St Stephen's Hospital, and refused to take any payment. What a lovely man. My parents wrote a letter to the cabbies' magazine afterwards to thank him.

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

AbbeyA Wed 20-Feb-08 07:38:08

When eldest DS was about 3 months old we were travelling to stay with my mother for a bank holiday weekend. She was very excited because she was on her own, my father having died a short time before, it was her first grandchild and our first visit, with him, to her house. Our car broke down half way, we called the RAC but it needed extensive work at a garage. We had home relay but couldn't have it taken to my mothers because my DH had to be back at work on the Tues. He went home with the car and so as not to disappoint my mother it was arranged that she would come to collect me.It was going to take her about 2 hours, so the RAC man took me to his home and his wife looked after me and DS until my mother arrived.I couldn't have sat on the roadside with baby and luggage for 2 hours, but it was very kind because we were not his problem.

TheDevilWearsPrimark Wed 20-Feb-08 08:58:23

On one of my first ventures out alone with my first baby I planned the trip really carefully so I could use tube stations that had lifts.
I had a lovely afternoon out, then got to the station to get home and found the lift wasn't working.
With a massive pram and feeling exhausted there was no way I could brave the escalator, and the thought of trying to squeeze onto two buses to get home was too much. I burst into tears.
A lady came over and asked if I needed any help. She offered to collapse the pram and take it down the escalator for me, then said 'hang on, what if you end up stuck at your stop when you get there?' She took £20 out of her purse and directed me to a black cab outside the station. I was so overwhelmed and refused, but she insisted and helped me get the pram in.
It was so lovely and thoughtful of her.

Especialy kind when I think of the number of times I've struggled up and down steps around London and not a single person has even looked my way, let alone offered to help.

snowleopard Wed 20-Feb-08 09:30:28

Ah London cabbies... a friend of mine finally plucked up the courage to leave her abusive boyfriend and organised a cab during the day so she could take all her stuff away while he was at work. But he turned up while she was there and started making a huge scene, threatening her, pleading, hanging onto her ankles etc. The manly cabbie took control, forcefully got all my friend's stuff in the cab, told her ex he saw it all the time and she wouldn't be coming back, unpeeled him from her and drove her away.

TheDevilWearsPrimark Wed 20-Feb-08 09:32:37

Another one, we were holidaying in a cottage in the highlands and stupidly only took food for the first night as we planned to buy what we needed locally. The next morning we had a series of disasters, we drove to the local shop (20 miles, lol!) to find the cash machine wasn't working and we had barely a penny between us. We asked the shopkeeper where the nearest one was (50 miles away)only to find the car wouldn't start.
The lovely lovely lady came out to see what was happening, closed up the shop and took us to the local pub where the landlord gave us drinks and cake on the house. His son was the local mechanic, but wouldn't be back until the morning.
The shopkeeper insisted on driving us home and handed us a box packed with groceries and told us to drop some money back when we could. The next afternoon the landlords son arrived in his van to tell us our car was fixed and he'd drive us to pick it up.
DH picked up the car, drove to the cash machine and back to the pub to pay but the lad winked and said just get a few in for me next time you're in the pub. We went that night and had a lovely evening drinking with him and his friends.

The sense of community and kindness astounded me but I suppose living in such an isolated area you have to rely on and trust each other.

milkymill Wed 20-Feb-08 09:46:06

Nothing to add but- this thread is wonderful, it's had me in tears here. Than ks for making me smile today [smiile].

milkymill Wed 20-Feb-08 09:46:59

Hasn't done anything for my ability to type though blush.

Kindersurpise Wed 20-Feb-08 09:49:54

I was (just) holding it together until the story of Custardo's rock. <<sniff>>

nettiehay Wed 20-Feb-08 10:06:38

One night after drinking in London, I hopped on the train to get hom and promptly feel asleep. Luckily a man who caught the same train as me in the morning happened to be catching a late night train home too. When it got to our stop, he woke me up and I stumbled from the train - too bleary eyed to even thank him. (I could have ended up in deepest darkest west country!)

I resolved to thank him the next day on the regular 7.28 train into London.... I never saw him again, so never got to thank him. I think of him as my train angel! wink

midnightexpress Wed 20-Feb-08 10:45:11

Where did lisalisa go??? I want to know if it was her that helped ghosty.

I've got two small ones.

When I was tiny, I got stuck in some mudflats after venturing out to try and fetch a shell, and a lovely lady in a white dress fished me out. Where were my parents, you might ask. They were in a pub garden. These were unreconstructed times...

And a couple of years ago I was trying to unload a very heavy microwave oven from the boot of my car when two young teenage boys came past and offered to help me with it up the stairs to my flat. It was a tiny thing really but it got me thinking, as I just wouldn't expect boys that age to be helpful blush so it revised my opinion of the Youth of Today.

When dh and I were on our honeymoon we met an old couple who had been married 30yrs. One day they bought us lunch and said that when they were on their honeymoon an old couple had done the same for them so they were passing it in. It will stick with me because if we get the chance DH and I will do the same for someone else.

Kindersurpise Wed 20-Feb-08 11:06:26

Just remembered something that happened to us on our honeymoon.

We were in Montepulciano in Italy and found a lovely restaurant. The owner asked if we were on our honeymoon, don't know how he knew, we must have been looking particularly dopey.

He brought us a glass of prosecco each and took a hefty discount off our bill. Then when we were leaving he ran after us and gave us a bottle of red wine.

TheDevilWearsPrimark Wed 20-Feb-08 11:14:32

mmmmm Montepulciano d'Abruzzo, one of the best wines ever.

(sorry)

SheRa Wed 20-Feb-08 11:21:14

Years ago an ex boyfriend and I were in Pahpos and having eaten at a restarant some nights before decided to go there again. We got there too late too lage but the waiters told us to come back in half an hour and then shared their own meal with us and would not take a penny for it. Meal was delicious too! Loving this thread x

tullytwo Wed 20-Feb-08 11:40:57

I ran out of petrol on a busy road and had dd with me and no mobile phone.

Whilst I sat there flapping a woman pulled up behind me and said she had seen me on her way past and come back for me. She let me use her phone to call dp and then went off to get me petrol.

She came back with a brand new petrol cannister full of petrol and wouldnt take any money for it - just drove off!

I couldnt express my thanks enough to her - not one single other person stopped to see if I was ok and I still think about her.

RubberDuck Wed 20-Feb-08 12:19:51

These are beautiful - have been sitting with a cup of tea and a box of tissues reading them all!!

My story takes me back to when I was 18 to the leaver's ball at school. I was all dressed up to the nines and my dad was driving me there when the car broke down. It was a remote country road, so he had to walk back home (fortunately not too far back, but even so would probably be a twenty minute/half hour walk) to get my mum and her car. I stayed with the broken down car.

About five minutes after he'd gone, a police car passed by and pulled over to check I was okay. One of the policemen stayed with me to make sure I was all right, while the other drove back to pick up my dad and give him a lift back.

Then they gave me a lift to the school in the police car - I made quite an entrance grin

hattyyellow Wed 20-Feb-08 12:39:21

Ooh I'm in tears reading this thread too!

I remember walking home by myself late at night in tears, as a teenager, after argument with boyfriend of the time.

A car stopped and the driver said he was very worried about me walking back in the dark by myself so late and offered me a lift.

With "don't get into strangers cars" ringing in my head I politely refused.

So he said something like "Okay, I understand you don't know me and don't want to get in the car. Very sensible. But my little sister is about your age so would it be okay if I kept circling around until you get to the centre of town just to check on you? If you tell me in what rough section of the town you live and give me a thumbs up when you get near your house, I'll drive off when you're nearly home".

So I walked along with him circling from time to time, grinning at me. I gave him the thumbs up a few roads from my house at which point he waved and drove off. I never saw him again but thought it was such a lovely thing to do!

I had a very positive experience two weeks ago with my ds, he's 11 with learning difficulties and deaf, he decided halfway through Moorgate tube Station that he needed the toilet!hmm and the guard was lovely when i explained and let us use the staff toilet. Ds then shouted MAN MAN at him till he turned round and ds said ANK YOU!! Last year i missed my connecting train at L Street because of a delay on the tube, i was in tears because i thought id have to pay extra, the guard at L Street was lovely and said "Madam we will get you on the 6.30" he then got his colleague and said "you will walk this lady to the train, you will find the guard and explain and if there any problems you will telephone me and I will sort it out" Both of the above experiences had me writing thankyou letters to London Underground and One Railways!!wink

hifi Wed 20-Feb-08 12:51:31

i was 18 and had gone out with friends to a different town, all in a cab discussing who had the fare,none of us had any cash. cab driver threw all 4 of us out in the middle of a really dodgy area.
we all had high heels and hardly any clothes on , it was in the days before mobiles and wondered how we would get home at 3am .
a police car drew up, ordered us in the back and dropped us all off at my parents, they put the blue lights on as we were pulling up.my mum woke up and wouldnt believe they had just given us a lift, we must have done something.
the police said they would rather take us home than finding us later.

CrushWithEyeliner Wed 20-Feb-08 12:57:41

I have thought of another. After doing the City commute for 6m of my PG (2006 the REALLY hot summer on record) and standing almost every day, one morning I was just feeling so wretched and a man walked up to me and gave me his seat. He then explained that he was on this carriage of the same train every morning and to look for him and he would give me his seat every day, which he did for the rest of my PG - got to know him quite well-, he explained that his wife had to commute whilst PG and she never got a seat so he wanted to help where he could. Such a sweet sweet man...

princessmel Wed 20-Feb-08 13:17:50

I want to know about ghostys 'angel' too.

I had one last week actually.
We were in Disney paris and I had thought it would be nice to go up the davy crocket treehouse. ds loves treehouses. Anyway I didn't realise how high up it would be. I am scared of stairs. Not so much heights but stairs. As we're going up i start to panic and say I don't like it etc. dh is holding dd and ds is going up fine. Dh kept saying 'nearly at the top 'etc.
When I reached the top I just burst into tears and collapsed to the floor. I couldn't move.
A German couple came past and asked dh if we were ok. dh said 'oh she's fine, she'll be ok in a minute' typical!
But I wasn't and they said we'll help her down. They each took one of my hands in theirs and held my arms really tightly and led me down. All the way speaking sofly and saying, 'you're nearly there' etc.
I was crying all the way. I was so grateful to them as I was very frightened.

Bink Wed 20-Feb-08 13:18:30

Lovely thread.

I've posted before about the darling little girl who saw dd (aged 6) wandering in the playground on dd's first day at a new school and said, "Would you like someone to play with?" Simple, but if only everyone in the world had just that touch.

(Actually, in the same vein I've always remembered Marina's son companionably taking his baked potato over to the 'allergy table' where a little boy was having to sit alone away from everyone else's fish.)

Am I allowed to do a domestic one? We had come home from holiday on a sleeper train. With horror I realised I'd forgotten my wedding & engagement rings - left them hanging on those neat little hooks by the bunk. Dh took ds, went to the station, found out which siding the train would have been sent on to, drove there, persuaded them to let him in, searched all the way down the coaches & came back with my rings.

TotalChaos Wed 20-Feb-08 13:21:44

when I got on a york train instead of a liverpool train from preston last year, guard looked up the connections for me to get back, and didn't charge me extra for the wrong bit of journey.

oooh and the bus driver earlier in the week = I stupidly didn't hold my hand out, so he didn't stop at the stop, but when he realised what had happened by my frantic look, he whizzed round the bus station and came round to the sotp.

cadelaide Wed 20-Feb-08 13:23:17

By NutterlyUts on Mon 18-Feb-08 20:35:26
"Aged 11, lost at the big secondary school. A 6th former saw me looking like a rabbit in a headlights, stopped to ask if he could help, and directed me to the playground. Never forgotten that, even though it wasn't anything big."

Made me a bit teary, that one! smile

This is one of the few threads I'm reading thoroughly from start to finish, it's very interesting I think.

BabiesEverywhere Wed 20-Feb-08 13:25:55

As a very homesick 18 year old student traveling from uni via London to home up North on a train.

Got to London to discover my ticket was no longer valid and I had no money, cheque book or anything and the train staff wouldn't let my parents pay over the phone for a ticket for me, as I had to had the bank card with me to pick up the sodding ticket. I just burst into tears in the middle of the station.

Kind stranger approached me, offered me the train fare £45 in cash for my ticket and said I could post it back to her when I got back home.

Bought me a cup of tea and a sticky bun at the train station cafe with her friend and cheered me up until the train arrived.

My parents managed to sort out the tickets long distance before the train arrived, so I could give this lady her money back straight away before I left London.

But how trusting and wonderful she was, she really made my day

My car broke down on the motorway on the way to my parent's house - I was taking DS over there, he was 4 months old and it's a 1.5 hour journey. I parked up on the hard shoulder and phoned the RAC. As I was waiting (with DS in his big red sling on my chest) 2 people pulled up on the hard shoulder to ask if they could help, one of them offered me his mobile in case I wanted to make any calls.
Thank you van-man and 4*4 lady, I hope if I see someone in a fix like that I will think to stop too.

Then the RAC man arrived and couldn't fix the wretched car, so towed me to a service station and asked what I wanted to do next. I only had roadside cover. I was just biting the bullet to pay for a tow to mum and dads (well over £150, gulp) when he decided to break all the rules and tow me himself. For nothing. DS and I sat up in the front of the breakdown truck and we chatted all the way back. He was lovely, and he risked his job to help us out.

Lucewheel Wed 20-Feb-08 13:42:00

Dh and I got married abroad.
On our wedding day a bottle of champagne appeared at our table and had been sent by a couple who were complete strangers to us.
When we went over to thank them they told us that another couple had done it for them on their wedding day and that they had waited along time to repeat the gesture, they wished us a long and happy marriage. We brought the bottle home with us, saved it and toasted the birth of our first child with it.
We are still waiting to be able to do the same for another couple to carry on this tradition. smile

Riddo Wed 20-Feb-08 13:49:37

In M&S cafe with a screaming tantuming ds (2), everyone looking daggers and disapproving so I left with him under one arm, pushing buggy one handed.

A lovely really old lady held the door for me, smiled sympathetically and said "Don't worry dear, they all do it sometimes". Her kindness made me cry and I've never forgotten her.

ajandjjmum Wed 20-Feb-08 13:54:51

I was taken on a day trip to London when I was very small. I was waiting to hand over my 6d (yes, it was that long ago!) for a postcard at the Tower of London souvenir shop, when I was told that the man before had paid for it.

I'm sure loads of people have been kind to me over the years, but that one always stays in my mind.

welshmum Wed 20-Feb-08 13:55:36

I was in New Zealand with dh and dd staying at his in-laws for Christmas. I was about 13 weeks pg and started to miscarry. It was so wierd being so far from my own family and friends and everyone there seemed to expect me to get on with it. I felt like I was somehow spoiling their Christmas.
I went to the GP a couple of times as the bleeding went on and on and they told me to let it take its course. The day before we were due to fly home and still losing loads of blood I took myself to the the local hospital and told my tale there.
They were so lovely to me especially the gynaecologist, a really sweet elderly asian man who shook his head and said 'oh no this shouldn't be happening' and whipped me into theatre. Just before I had anaethetic I remember asking him if I'd be able to have another baby, explaining that I'd had to have fertility treatment to get pg ' Of course, my dear' he said and stroked my forehead.
He was so wonderful - and right, ds arrived a year or so later smile

oooh welshmum, you've made me well up.

Bink Wed 20-Feb-08 14:08:43

Another one, which ajandjj's story has reminded me of ... and which I am not quite sure would happen nowadays -

Aged about 6 I found a pound note in a puddle on the way to school. Knowing it was precious I gave it to my teacher, who said she would hand it in to the police. Do you think that was the end of it?

No. Six months later (the formal "lost property" period) there was a knock on the classroom door. In came a huge huge policeman, and gave me my pound note.

Just imagine the levels of thoughtfulness behind that!

wilbur Wed 20-Feb-08 14:10:00

11 yrs ago, was on holiday with dh and another couple in Venezuela - three of us were sick with a stomach thing, and our friend had it so badly we had got him checked out at an American Hosp in Caracas. Doctor had said he thought is was just regular travellers tummy, but did some tests just in case and told us to call in a couple of days for results. We travelled on way away from the city, took a day and a half to get to a v remote area. Stayed at a guesthouse owned by a lovely American lady, who helped us phone the doctor who told us that actually we all had something v nasty, a type of full-blown dysentery and MUST have antibiotics immediately. So lovely lady took us to the pharmacy, translated for us, got the right pills and when we realised we didn't have enough for the drugs, let alone the guesthouse bill, she loaned us the money and told us to send it when we got home. We did, of course, but bless her, what a chance to take with a bunch of smelly Brits.

foxinsocks Wed 20-Feb-08 14:21:32

I have to post this now as I can't stop looking at this thread and it's doing my head in.

About 16 years ago, my dad couldn't cope with my mum (an alcoholic with mental health problems) any longer and sent her down to stay with me (I was 18/19) while he went away and did his own thing. I was trying to study - no-one asked me if she could stay - she just turned up on the doorstep in a pile.

The first night, I got called by the barman at the local pub to come and pick her up as she had passed out on the floor (I knew the barman from university). Second day, she woke up and downed a 5 litre box of wine.

So on the 3rd day, she told me about these tablets the doctor had given her called Antabuse that were supposed to stop her drinking. I thought this sounded brilliant but she didn't want to take them so I thought I'd be really clever and mix them in with her coffee so that when I came back that evening, she would be sober.

Except I came back and she was barely breathing sad. I didn't know what to do so called for an ambulance and they put me through to the National Poisons Line. I told them what I had done and the man on the other end was incredibly calm and just wonderful. He told me those pills were designed to make you incredibly ill when you drank, to the point that it could be very dangerous but that I didn't know this and I was only doing what I thought would work. Never once did he get cross (even though I had been incredibly stupid!) and he was the first person I had ever spoken to about the whole situation and he was reassuring and kind and compassionate . He told me he would speak to the ambulance people and tell them what to do and he would personally take charge of my mother's case once she got to hospital.

I know he was doing his job but it was the way and manner in which he did it. He didn't have to treat me so kindly - he would have been well within reason to tell me I was a prat but he didn't and I've never ever forgotten his kindness to me that day. I never met him. I never saw my mum in hospital that time but he's always remained in my mind.

BabiesEverywhere Wed 20-Feb-08 14:24:27

{{{foxinsocks}}}

kitbit Wed 20-Feb-08 14:28:26

dh has one - when staying with his parents when they lived in Ireland we went on a weekend trip to Dingle. There's a lovely bay there and dh and his dad borrowed a little coracle from the friends we were staying with to splash about in the water for a bit. They were gone for ages and we were starting to get a bit worried...then they turned up totally knackered and a bit the worse for wear - they'd got carried away and had actually paddled right across the bay (it had taken them an hour or so) and when they got there all chilled and exhilarated they went into the lone stone pub for a pint of guinness...to discover they hadn't got a penny between them. The landlord gave them both a hearty ploughmans and 2 or 3 pints each and told them to come by sometime and settle up. One of the farmers even offered to drive them home but the coracle wouldn't fit in the tractor so they had to paddle back - with nice full tummies and a guinness-fuelled twinkle in their eyes!
They drove around the next day and the landlord said "I wasn't expecting you so soon, I thought you might come back next year when you come on your holidays again or something" !

geordiemacminx Wed 20-Feb-08 15:30:51

Luce - I'll let you buy mine - IF DP EVER PROPOSES!!!! wink

rainbowbadger Wed 20-Feb-08 16:05:06

As v v naive teenagers myself and then boyfriend (now husband - who else would stand for our rubbish planning!) went to the Glastonbury Festival with nowt more than a tent and green Doc Martins to buy a ticket off a tout which we duly did for over the odds and were given our coloured wristbands. Of course going through the gates we got immediately taken to one side by quite a 'grandaddy' steward who gave us a big lecture about trusting touts, got all the other stewards to laugh at the price we'd paid all whilst he put on us pukka wristbands and shooed us on into the hallowed fields - back in the early 90's so prob less tolerant there now but what a real example of the festival spirit!

filthymindedvixen Wed 20-Feb-08 16:15:08

oh glasto! One year me and a female friend went and on the way our windscreen was smashed, We used every scrap of our money to get it fixed (no cash cards in them days!) and turned up with tent/1 very small case of beer and a lot of hope in the kindness of strangers.
At first we used the beer to barter for food. Then word got around that we were penniless thru' no fault of our own and people fed us, gave us beer (and , erm, joints) all weekend. We were very young and no-one took advantage of us!
TBH this was 20 years ago and I don't think people would be so kind now....

evenhope Wed 20-Feb-08 16:16:20

When I was about 18 I had an accident on my motorbike. A van pulled out of a side road in front of the car I was following. The car stopped- I didn't. I was gathered up by a biker I hadn't noticed behind me. He had me under one arm and the bike in the other. The front mudguard had got jammed down over the wheel so it wouldn't move. He fixed the bike by the side of the road then told me to follow him to the police station to report it, where he did all the talking, then called my parents to get them to pick me up.

Another one was on a cross channel ferry. DH and I were driving with our 6 week old PFB in her carrycot on the back seat of our 2 door hatchback. As they loaded us on, one of the crew noticed the carrycot and called to the others "there's a little baby in here". They then stopped all the loading and helped DH lift the carrycot out through the hatchback, only carrying on once we'd got over to the stairs out of the way.

filthymindedvixen Wed 20-Feb-08 16:17:12

I am a huge advocate of RAOK and endeavour to carry them out whenever the opportunity arises.
This is a beautiful thread and reading some of these experiences has made me cry!

filthymindedvixen Wed 20-Feb-08 16:23:01

oh crap! I forgot a major one! When my ds was in hospital with meningitis for a fortnight, a vague aquaintance (not even a friend!) heard about it and turned up at my home with a week's shopping which she left on the doorstep for me (as we wwere at the hosp).
I only found out who had done it by chance, weeks later when a neighbour said he had seen someone leaving the shopping.
He just said ''it was a woman with a blue car with a little girl''. From his description of the woman's dd, I worked out who it was (she had distinctive hair!)

Our paths never really crossed that much and she upset some of my friends subsequently so we nver did get past aquaintance stage, but I will NEVER forget her kindness and thoughtfullness at that dark time.

flowerybeanbag Wed 20-Feb-08 16:23:47

I was in my beat up little Renault 5 driving back from visiting DH when we were both at separate universities. Car started majorly playing up, slowing down, so I crawled off the main road and saw a garage which I pulled into.

I went in in floods, asked the person in there if I could use the phone. I phoned my poor DH and wept down the phone blush all stranded and helpless in the cold and dark. He very sensibly advised me to phone the Green Flag, as he couldn't do anything.

I came off the phone and a man who was there paying for petrol with his son asked me what was wrong, said he'd have a look at the car, drove his car up with headlights on so he could see, found a random bit of the bonnet was dangling in the engine, sorted it out for me, then took the car round the block to make sure it was working, leaving me with his son, then set me on my way.

He was so nice, and I was sooo pathetic!

misdee Wed 20-Feb-08 16:26:52

i cant pinpoint exactly, but i experienced a lot of RAOK at harefield. from the lady in the canteen letting me have a cup of tea for 20p because i had run out of change, from the little hand squeezes from people as peter went downhill, to the massive hug from one of the patients who assured me it would all work out.

and for Jason the nurse, who ignored my no tea request and bought me a cuppa anyway when peter went down for transplant.

filthymindedvixen Wed 20-Feb-08 16:30:58

oh hospitals are fab places for small but hugely life-affirming RAOK

(our hosp took the unheard of step waived the visitor parking fee for my mum when we all thought ds was dying...)

Yes, many lovely nurses who brought me books to read while I was conducting my 2-week vigil, and the ones who took me by the hand to tha canteen to make me eat and the one who played with my toddler for hours with the Brio so I could have a nap...

mrsmalumbas Wed 20-Feb-08 16:35:42

The two lovely men on the train from Paddington yesterday afternoon who moved so that me and my DD's could sit down - very kind of them and all the more welcome because DD2 was really ill and spent much of the journey vomiting into a Harrods carrier bag!

purpleduck Wed 20-Feb-08 16:37:37

I was travelling back to Tel Aviv from Jerusalem, and only had enough money for the cab and a Falafel (was going home that day). I was counting my money in the cab, worried and hungry. I got out of the cab, it drove away, and I realised i had left my wallet in the cab.
I told someone at the Taxi-rank thingy, and the drivers shuttled it between them to get it back to me. Amazing!!! grin

On the same trip, I was in Egypt, and I was really short of money - very tight budget, only enough for cheap food. I was feeling a bit sick, and wanted a MEAL, but couldn't afford it. I went into a shop, and there in a box of apples was a fiver. I tried to give it to the shopkeeper, but he kept thrusting it back to me. It was only a small amount, but made all the difference in the world.

jamescagney Wed 20-Feb-08 17:11:32

When I was 8 months pregnant, I had travelled all the way to Dublin, on 2 trains really early in the morning and had to get on the Luas. I fought my way in feeling exhausted.It was pissing down, carriage was full and this big tycoon business man just tapped my shoulder and gave me his seat. tears just rolled down, i could have kissed him.
Also when I crashed my dh( then boyfriend)s car, totalling it. Guard found my glasses, brought me into pharmacy and made me tea and gave me kit kat. it was warm in there and people so nice. About a week later, same Guard doing traffic duty, stopped me and said "great to see you back driving lovey"

Iota Wed 20-Feb-08 17:27:50

It was a dark and stormy night... {smile]

11pm, I was driving home alone from the pub and my car engine died at a set of traffic lights in town. It was the olden days, long before mobile phones.

An AA van stopped behind me and the lovely AA man looked at my engine, found the loose battery connection and fixed it. He then followed me across town to make sure that the engine didn't die again.

I think I was a member of National Breakdown at the time smile

aefondkiss Wed 20-Feb-08 17:43:19

great thread

Phlox Wed 20-Feb-08 18:41:01

DS was six months old and I was pretty postnatal. DH dropped me and the baby at the supermarket then took DD to a Drs appointment. I did my shopping and spent all my money (we were completely broke at the time). After an hour DH hadn't returned and DS started screaming blue murder. I tried repeatedly to raise DH on his mobile but no joy. DS was in his car seat and I had no buggy with me so I couldn't even attempt to walk home (we lived about 5 miles away!)

Another hour passed and I was beginning to lose it completely. Finally I burst into tears at Customer Services (by now very hungry DS also still screaming). At this point a lovely little old lady approached me and said "My dear, I have nothing else to do today and I am happy to drive you wherever you need to go".

At this precise moment DH turned up but I have never forgotten this kind lady who was prepared to take a complete stranger (who happened to be an over emotional sobbing wreak) and her screaming baby home.

FAQ Wed 20-Feb-08 18:45:48

LAtest one - which I'm sure will stick in my mind forever happened today - complete stranger handed me a folded up £10 on the bus as I was heading back to my DB's with the DS's. Told me to treat the Ds's with something tomorrow as they were so good - and then got off the bus and disappeared into the commuter crowd before I could say/do anything.

Up until then I had EXACTLY the right amount of money to be able to do the planned stuff with the DS's tomorrow and Friday and a small amount to spend on Friday night - I can now go out on Friday (first time in a LONG time) and actually enjoy myself instead of counting the pennies smile

This thread is fab smile <wipes away a wee tear>

Mine relates to our very own Marslady, who e-mailed me her number so I could phone up for a chat when I was having nasty "is it or isn't it" contractions at 32 weeks <thanks again marsy smile>. She also talked to me about my worries over VBAC vs elective C-section.

I thought it was fab, that someone who was, to all intents and purposes, just a nickname on a computer screen would take time out of her very busy schedule to put my mind at rest.

It makes me happy to be part of the MN community.

FAQ Wed 20-Feb-08 19:03:30

Then of course there were the 3 MN'ers - one was UCM, the others shall remain un-named who at various points in time have either lent me money - or in the case of the latter two gave me money when things have been tight. They know who they are and I'm very grateful.

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

oh, jamescagney, you've reminded me of when I wrote off my sister's car and had to sit in a hotel in Brompton-on-Swale on a dark, wet September night with all my luggage around about me waiting for the bloke I was visiting in Leeds for the weekend (now my DH grin) to come and pick me up.

The regulars in the hotel took me under their wing and fed me brandy (for the shock) and kept me laughing and from dwelling on a very scary experience till DH arrived.

MoreSpamThanGlam Wed 20-Feb-08 19:10:43

I did a walk for Breakthrough Breast Cancer in China (through the Gobi Desert). On the last day of treking I was exhausted and hot, as we finished the walk we entered a very poor village. A young boy quickly chnaged into a suit and asked all to come in and share some tea. He was really proud of his home (which was a stone bed in which he, his mother and siblings slept). He oftered us food and tea and he clearly had nothing, really, nothing. He was so concerned for our welfare. That boy absolutely blew me away with his kindness.

We were told not to offer any money as it would be an insult, so i just gave my toiletries and choc bars and hair bands to his little sisters.

callmeovercautious Wed 20-Feb-08 22:21:35

Driving home one night past a Stud farm near Newmarket the White Van in front hit a Horse and stopped dead. Luckily I managed to stop in time so I did not hit him but the sight of that poor Horse(Polo Pony as it turned out, 2 had been let out by some kids thinking it was fun) was dreadful. The locals were out straight away and one couple in particular were fantastic and had given out cups of tea and coffee to those sat waiting to move. I had sat in my car with the lights on and engine off - giving light to the Police as they sorted out the crash. When they told me to go around my engine would not start. Lo and behold they did not have time to push start me hmm

The couple I mentioned earlier found me and invited me back to theirs whilst I waited for the RAC. They were a bit tipsy as they had been in the Pub when the accident happenned but they were so kind and friendly.

I remember them everytime I drive past.

Lotstodo Thu 21-Feb-08 09:57:31

Whar a lovely lot of stories there are on here - some major but many minor acts of real kindness. Also, faced with desperation these acts of kindmess are so appreciated and as we can see here can completely change the way of thinking by the recipient.

twofalls Thu 21-Feb-08 10:04:31

I was 26, fell asleep on the last train home from London and ended up miles away from where I lived. I was in tears on Swindon station and the guard took me into his cabin, gave me tea and biscuits, found me some magazines, let me use his phone and then an hour later walked me to where my rather cross Dad was waiting to take me home. I have never forgotten that lovely man and my Mum sent him a little thank you note addressed to "the guard who looked after my scatty daughter last Saturday night". I hope it got to him. smile

prettybird Thu 21-Feb-08 10:42:07

I was travelling back from visitng my pen firend in the SOuth of Farnce aged 17. Carrying my heavy bag across Paris between Gard du Nord and Gard de Lyon, I tripped and fell dwon some stairs in the metro, sparining my ankle. I had a whole day in Paris, and after putting my bags in left luggage, then tried to hobble about and visit the Louvre. I was in so much pain that I didn't get much further than the the arches of the Louvre - I hadn't realsied it was so large. I birst into tears and a nice gendarme took pity on me. He sat me dwon, called the Police Secours and then came with me to the loca hospital, where they x-rayed my foot. I wandered out of the hpsital and discovered I was in the square beside Notre Dame.

I remember that every time I vist Paris - as we always go to a wee a wee cafe just beside Notre Dame and I think how most people wouldn't even know there was a hosptial there.

prettybird Thu 21-Feb-08 12:06:22

Ths thread has really got me thinking: it is a bit like that film "Pay it forward" and reminds me that I should really be doing more to pass on my own bit of karma. It is usually constrained to offering people small amounts of change when they are struggling to find the money at a checkout.

I have remembered another (embarassing) incident about a RAOK blush. Dh (dp at the time) and I were staying at a resort just north of Mombasa. We deciced to be brave and go for a meal in the evening in Mombasa. We had had our meal and were trying to catch a matatu (minibus) back to the resort in the dark. This guy kept on bugging us as we waited and we kept on shooing him away, saying we weren't interested. At the same time we were despairing of catching the matatu, as they all appeared tob e full. Eventually he got us to answer the question about where we were going, at which point he was able to tell us "Well, you don't wait here, you need to wait down there" blush

RedFraggle Thu 21-Feb-08 14:38:48

I was heavily pregnant with DS and had DD (20 months) in the car asleep . I had gone to the tip to drop off some junk and then was taking the car to the garage to get my exhaust fixed as it was a bit loose. While I was there though I noticed that my "loose" exhaust was actually hanging off! I was getting all flustered and stressed out and two lovely men (who were also dropping off stuff at the tip) came to my rescue. They went to find someone at the tip to get tools and were soon on the floor under my car trying to temporarily fix the exhaust. When they found they couldn't, the bloke at the tip who had come over brought out some string and they managed to string the exhaust up so it wasn't dragging on the road while I drove to the garage. They were so lovely and helpful - it was great. I was almost in tears, I was so relieved.

AbbeyA Thu 21-Feb-08 15:00:30

My exhaust dropped partially off one wet evening with 2 small DCs in the car.I got out to see what the noise was and a man came out of his house, got a mat to get down on the road (he was wearing a suit)and look underneath. He managed to pull off the bit that was hanging down and put it in the boot for me to get the short distance home. All in the pouring rain.I was most grateful as I wouldn't have had the strength to pull it off myself.

sallysparkle Thu 21-Feb-08 15:05:51

I slipped over on an icy pavement when I was 6 months pg. A lady and her mum came over to me and got help to lift me (how embarrassing!) What I remember most was how kind, caring and reassuring the mum was to dd who was 3 at the time. Bless her, she was terrified seeing her mum lying prone on the floor. They took us to the nearest cafe and bought us tea and biscuits. I still can't get over just how kind they were to us. I still keep in touch with them.

thelittlestbadger Thu 21-Feb-08 15:23:03

I'm so grateful to all the people who looked after me when I was pregnant and travelling by Northern line every day. I was a complete mess for the first 3 (and last 3!) months and kept on fainting all over the place. I;m particularly grateful to the guy who helped me at Camden Town when the tube I was on decided to go down the wrong branch of the Northern Line. He got me onto the new train shouted down the carriage to get people to move up and ran a competition to see who would give me their seat first. Lovely man.

meep Thu 21-Feb-08 15:25:54

What a lovely thread!

Mine was when dd was 1 day old. It was night 2 in hospital and dd just wouldn't stop crying. I fed her and fed her and as soon as I put her down to sleep she'd cry. I was exhauted and this lovely girl came and sat with me at about 2am (she wasn't a midwife) - she helped me latch dd on, she cuddled dd and winded her. She offered to take her awy so that I could get some sleep but I just couldn't let dd go - so she sat by my bedside while I splept with dd on my chest and watched to make sure she didn't roll off. It was only an hour's sleep but I was so grateful. I never saw her again so I was never able to thank her in person.

clam Thu 21-Feb-08 17:27:06

Don't know whether this qualifies as staying in my mind forever as this only happened about a month ago, but....
1) the Frenchman who risked his life sidestepping down a cliff-face to rescue DH's ski that had fallen off his boot from the chairlift.
2)the other Frenchman who hoisted DD (a hulking great 9 year old) on to his shoulder after he discovered her sobbing at the edge of the piste refusing to ski another inch further, and schussed down to the easy bit with her squealing in glee all the way. (DH and I were on the scene, promise, but with insufficient skills/muscles to do what he did, plus we'd lost patience with her by this time).

PatsyCline Thu 21-Feb-08 17:32:36

What a lovely thread this is.

About 20 years ago I was dragging a heavy bag of belongings along a street in Liverpool with tears streaming down my face (I'd just discovered that my much loved boyfriend had been shagging around). A guy stopped me and insisted on carrying the bag to my street. On the way he put up with my "All men are bastards" rant and just nodded sagely. What a sweetie. smile

Patsy

clam Thu 21-Feb-08 17:32:36

Don't know whether this qualifies as staying in my mind forever as this only happened about a month ago, but....
1) the Frenchman who risked his life sidestepping down a cliff-face to rescue DH's ski that had fallen off his boot from the chairlift.
2)the other Frenchman who hoisted DD (a hulking great 9 year old) on to his shoulder after he discovered her sobbing at the edge of the piste refusing to ski another inch further, and schussed down to the easy bit with her squealing in glee all the way. (DH and I were on the scene, promise, but with insufficient skills/muscles to do what he did, plus we'd lost patience with her by this time).

Califrau Thu 21-Feb-08 18:27:17

I have remembered another. This thread is inspiring.

I hadn't been driving long (took test age 23). I went to fill up, got too close to the pump and ended up bursting my tyre on the curb - no idea how. I didn't notice anything had happened, drove off and got round the corner in a side street to see what was wrong. It was PISSING with rain. Proper Welsh chucking it down. I phoned DH who muttered he'd be as quick as he could but he woudl have to walk as his car was at college. I was about 20 mins from home. I sat down in the car and looked forlorn. There was a tap on the window and this white t-shirted Levis hunk appeared looking cool and said "hop out and I'll put your tyre on for you!" So I did! And he did (looking suave and luscious all the while). Just as he was doing up teh last bolt, DH appeared over the horizon dressed head to foot in blue waterproofs looking like a smurf and my handsome unsung hero said "there you are then" in a Cardiff accent and disappeared into the rain.

CrushWithEyeliner Thu 21-Feb-08 18:53:37

oh califrau he sounds YUMMY grin

I was on my way to a friend's house and driving along the Fosse Way when my wheel fell off (and bounced over a nearby fence, I hasten to add!), so I was stranded in the middle of no-where on my own. I called the RAC who said they'd be an hour, but actually they took over 3 hours (by which point it was very dark, cold and wet!). I was quite close to a little cottage and a guy came out after about an hour with a cup of coffee, said he'd passed me on his way back from work. We stood and had a chat and he said to come up to his cottage if I needed to get warm. I thought that was a really nice gesture, I didn't know him from adam.

mummyjenjen Mon 03-Mar-08 15:43:37

this is going back to when i was at secondary school i was walking home in the rain after some bullys stole my bus fair it was about a mile and a half home , it was chucking it down and i was cold wet and tired a woman was walking towards me and asked if i wanted a day rider ( a bus ticket for £2.50 where you can use it all day on any bus) she must have read my mind she truly was an angel!

cyteen Sun 06-Apr-08 12:47:40

I read this thread last night with a lump in my throat - how lovely people can be

The kindness I met with from hospital staff during my brother's illness was always so welcome; I can't fault the many different nurses, doctors, cleaners, porters, techies and other staff who made sure he was treated like a person, not a case, while he was sick. I know he met many more than I did and had a few less happy times, but overall I was really stunned at how people who spend their lives dealing with complex and fraught situations could still find the time to care about patients and their families in such an individual way.

In particular, two things stand out: the first was when Si was first admitted to hospital, when a series of traumatic events culminating in emergency spinal decompression resulted in him being diagnosed with a rare, horrible and difficult to treat cancer. He ended up spending a month in a specialist hospital, having three operations and being told progressively worse news about his disease and prognosis. Obviously this was a massive shock to all of us - he was only in his early thirties and the cancer was a complete bolt from the blue.

Simon's surgical consultant was brilliant but very busy and hardly ever available, physically or emotionally, which is fair enough. But the SpR, Dr Way, despite being attached to this very busy team, always went out of his way to make time for Si, to keep him abreast of all the test results, developments, procedures etc. He always had time to explain things, to sit and have a chat, and I got the sense that he genuinely liked Si (which wasn't hard). When it became clear that the cancer had already spread to Si's lungs, meaning he was Stage 3 at diagnosis and realistically faced a very slim chance of survival even past five years, Dr Way made time to come down and tell him himself, as soon as he knew, and to be there for all of Si's questions and fears. He always had the time. That was so important to all of us, in such a scary situation. And he never made Simon feel like just a fascinating medical case - he was just a person.

The other thing that stands out is less happy, but one of those tiny insignificant moments that actually means so much. My brother died last year after a period of sharp decline, and we all spent his last week camped out around his bed basically waiting for it to happen. He slipped away one morning; my DP went out to tell a member of staff as the rest of us stood sobbing and shocked. A young Australian nurse came in, spoke to us a little bit, and went over to him, and as she checked him over I heard her say "Poor love". It was so clearly a spontaneous expression, not staged for us grieving relatives to hear, but just because she was moved by the sight of him lying in his bed, so reduced and degraded by disease. For some reason it meant a lot to me and still does...that she marked his passing with compassion.

margosbeenplayingwithmynoonoo Sun 06-Apr-08 13:22:21

I was trying to park my car in a car park and ended up too close to a concrete pillar. I still hadn't parked properly and I knew that I would damage my car if I moved it any further. I just just sat there in tears not knowing what to do.

A man knocked on the window and told me he could move it. He said it would end up scratched but it had to be moved and he could limit the damage.

What a nice man.

pillowcase Sun 06-Apr-08 14:08:20

Not a random act from a stranger really, but rather consistent kind acts from someone who barely knew me......

When I was in college we spent a year abroad in Austria. The local coordinator's job was to help me find accommodation and that's all. But she did much much more, inviting me and my friends over for dinner at least once a month. 4 of us arrived with a cheapo bottle of wine between us, and proceeded to devour a fabulous meal and as much booze as the house could hold. Then we'd mutter a feeble 'thank you' and leave, not to bother contacting her for the whole month, until the next invite came. I always think I must have seemed so ungrateful, greedy, never giving back in return. I admire her so much I hope to give that sustained kindness back to someone else.

FranSanDisco Sun 06-Apr-08 14:08:52

I was in Tenerife in a nature park with dh and dd (12 months) when one of the "tame" limas we were supposed to feed suddenly attacked me and left deep stratches in my calf. There was alot of blood and panic as the other tourists tried to get out of the fenced area as quickly as they could. Dh was trying to hold me up and carry dd at the same time as I couldn't walk. Two men carried me up a slope to an ambulance and drove dh to the hospital. One of the men's wives translated for me and made sure we knew where the local pharmacy was for AB's. They spent about 3 hours with us even though they had their own children to think about. I am immensely grateful to them and wrote to thank them when I got back to England.

DJCod Sun 06-Apr-08 14:08:52

NO

margosbeenplayingwithmynoonoo Sun 06-Apr-08 14:15:01

ooh - is it because you're forgetful or no-one's ever been kind to you? (I can't believe the latter would be true)

DJCod Sun 06-Apr-08 14:16:17

LOl
i juist want to be all mean and menacing
i am goign to THINK hard

midnightexpress Sun 06-Apr-08 14:31:14

Or because you're so mean and menacing that no-one is nice to you? wink

BellaDonna79 Sun 06-Apr-08 14:53:48

Back in 1999 I volunteered with a homeless charity in London, giving out bottles of water and sandwiches and medicine etc, well one day I was trying to help up a homeless man as he was quite clearly very ill and needed to go to hospital, now being 5ft4 and at the time weighing less than 7stone I clearly struggled to get him up (he was a big guy, well over 6ft) now about a dozen buisness in suits walked past pretending they hadn't seen us when a chavvy, tracksuited teenage boy swaggered over, I was thinking, oh no I can't cope if he is any trouble, when he said, looks like you need a hand there mate, he then proceeeded to help the bloke up, called us an ambulance on his mobile (I'm ashamed to say I was told by the charity not to take money or phones with me as they'd be nicked and I followed their advice) and bought 3 cups of tea for us all while we waited for the ambulance!

I was just so ashamed by how I had been stereotyping without even realising it blush

Mhamai Sun 06-Apr-08 15:06:10

My handbag was robbed in Charles de Gaul last year. I missed my flight and as there were no further flights to Dublin that night, I was panicking to say the least. A complete stranger, a security guard gave me money for a B&B and the cost of the taxi fare back to the airport. He and his wife would have put me up in their home but had relatives visiting and had no room.

The security guy told me that prior to getting married, himself and his wife found themselves in a similar situation in Australia and no one came to their aid.

On return to Dublin, I was all set to post back the money lent to me but then realised I'd lost the piece of papaer with his address. I was devastated because I thought he might think I was just some opportunist chancer.

Last week clearing through a load of papers etc I came across his address. I can't wait to post the money across and will be forever grateful for his act of kindness.

MeMySonAndI Sun 06-Apr-08 18:00:22

My mother was not very happy at all with the University I wanted to attend (It was the best one in the area but she had some stupid ideas about American universities). It took me ages to convince her to allow me to try for it.

The university had an introductory program for students who were not profficient in English and need it to improve it a bit before going into the average courses. Problem was that I asked for the info in English and that ruled me out of the program and an academic aptitude exam and landed me on the TOEFL list when I could barely order fries in Mc Donalds. I thought I had ruined the chance until I saw a guy carrying some documents that had the University logo, we started talking about it and I mentioned about the problem I was in. HE was great, he lend me the books to study for the test, studied with me, took me to the test and waited for me to finish to return me home. I never came accross him again in all the time in Uni, but I will be forever grateful for that, without his help my life would have been completely different.

Anyways, I passed the test, and the first thing my mother told me when she learnt I had been accepted was that I was not going to get any help from her and that I should prepare my self to do the "work" as she was not going to provide even the means for transport, which was a bad thing because that would mean a 2.5 hours commute each way, which included walking in bad areas and 3 or 4 buses each way. So, after a couple of weeks with me happily going through that (I was determined to attend that university), I met with some friends and a guy who was around told me he had seen me walking on his way to University, asked where I lived and took me to Uni for 6 months despite the fact I was living way out of his way. He said that in his first year he was also faced with the same and that so many people had supported him that once he got a car started to pay the favour forwards. Needless to say that when I finally got a car, it was like a bus! grin

I'm also indebted to a Swedish woman married to a Belgian man, who decided to spend 6 hours while we were stranded in a Italian airport, talking to me about the problems faced in multicultural marriages. I had just started dating DexH, and where not clear at all of what it was to come. The things she said to me about what was fair and what was not, have stayed with me ever since. She was a very positive influence in my married life despite me not seeing her again after she boarded her flight.

MeMySonAndI Sun 06-Apr-08 18:26:31

That's it, Marina's son and the allergy table have finally got me in tears. A huge thank you for all people out there who make the life of our little ones easier.

sophable Sun 06-Apr-08 19:02:23

I've got lots and lots but here are two:

Flew up to Benbecula last summer with BA (spit swear) who managed to lose my bag. Stupidly I'd packed all of my gear and ds's gear including his teddy (who he can't get to sleep without) in it (needless to say all dh's gear including fishing gear arrived no problem).

there is only one shop on south uist that sells clothes afaik and it wasn't fantastic, but i did manage to get some knickers for me and ds and socks but that was it, we had the clothes we stood in and nothing else.

I phoned benbecula airport on the hour for the next 3 days, could not get a number for lost luggage glasgow from anyone, given short shrift by BA customer services, apparently no one knew where my bag was, except that I knew fine well it was at glasgow and hadn't made the connection to Benbecula.

Posted a huge rant on MN. Next day midnightexpress went to the airport, found my bag and got it on the next flight (I'm in tears remembering this). She said something like 'oh, i've got not much on this morning and don't live far from the airport'. But she went massively out of her way for me and I'll never forget it, Thank you so much you lovely lovely woman!

Second one, was interrailling aged 17 with then boyfriend. We missed a connection and realised we had 15 hours to wait in Milan (i think it was), were short of money, hadn't budgeted for the hotel there. The people we were on the train with said get off with us in Bologna and spend the time with us instead of walking the streets of Milan. They took us to their mum's apartment, an amazing one in the centre of Bologna with frescoes on the wall, fed us an amazing lunch. put us in a huge double bedroom with a beautiful white crisp sheeted bed in it (best bed we'd seen for about 3 weeks). we slept for hours and then they took us to an incredible restaurant for some of the best food we'd ever had or that i've had since. Then they drove us to the train station and saw us onto our connecting train. Can't remember their names but they were lovely people.

margosbeenplayingwithmynoonoo Sun 06-Apr-08 20:50:49

I've just remembered one about my DH - He was then my boyfriend.

He was staying over at our house (on the sofa in the living room) and my Gran was also staying with us and was sleeping in the next room on the sofabed.

She got up during the night and called upstairs for my dad but she had such a soft voice, she didn't wake anyone upstairs. DH got up and went in to her. She needed help to go to the toilet and he helped her there and back. But she went into the living room and sat on his bed and carried on chatting away to my DH until morning.

She died a few weeks after that.

We all appreciated how kind he was to my Gran - he said he was too scared to go upstairs and wake my parents!

I take my DH for granted too often and I should remind myself of his RAOK from time to time.

milliec Tue 29-Apr-08 18:35:26

Message withdrawn

GentleOtter Tue 29-Apr-08 18:47:16

Some of these stories make you feel SO warm inside...
My Robin Reliant blush broke down in the middle of nowhere in very heavy rain. I was prepared just to sit and have a minor panic when what seemed like hundreds of soldiers appeared out of nowhere - all with bushes on their heads and painted faces.
They were on an excercise but they produced a cup of tea, mended my car then waved and blew kisses as I drove away.

milliec Tue 29-Apr-08 18:51:35

Message withdrawn

cyteen Tue 29-Apr-08 18:54:02

GentleOtter, that's really made me laugh! The image of loads of camoflaged bad boys melting out of the undergrowth and sorting you out - brilliant!

Slightly similar (but much less impressive): my best friend was cycling home a bit worse for wear, crashed her bike and did something to it that meant it wouldn't run properly. She also hurt her leg. So she was limping home at about 2am through New Cross, feeling very sorry for herself and pushing her knackered bike along, when this guy dressed in a huge white coat just appeared on the path before her - she must have looked a bit needy because he knelt down and had fixed her bike within minutes. Then he waved her on while she blustered out some thank-yous grin Bicycle Repair Man lives!

GentleOtter Tue 29-Apr-08 20:30:59

grin

noscat Tue 29-Apr-08 21:39:17

My son broke his arm really badly in a playground jumping off a swing, but at the time i was also looking after my friend's two children (plus my daughter). A v kind elderly gentleman who was in the park with his grandson went to the phone box to call an ambulance, and because when it arrived all five of us had to get in and I had no way of telling their mother what had happened (children were too young to know their telephone number and I was too distraught to remember it off the top of my extremely muddled head) he was even more generous and went to my friend's house to let her know what had happened and what hospital we'd been taken to. I would give anything to know his name and thank him.

I like to give ROAK's to anyone (although I've not yet had the pleasure of receiving one, but I can say that I'm honestly not bothered, I much prefer the warm gooey feeling of giving! grin )
One of my favourites that I'll remember forever entered my head whilst walking home from my mum's house.
I had been living in a shared house for nearly a year when my great grand father died, he was cremated on St Patrick's day (I'll never forget that either as he was Irish, born and bred!) and my mum had kindly brought me back to her's for dinner but I had to get home to make sure I was ready for work the next day etc.
So, dropped by an off-liscence for some drinky-poos (I'm telling you I needed it!), walking through town with my bag of booze I saw a young homeless woman playing one of those irish pipe thingies (Piccolo? hmm ), sat down with her, shared a bevvie, gave her my jacket and wandered off home. . . I did offer for her to come back and sleep in a warm room but she declined (I must've seemed like a complete nutter!).
I always smile when I think of her and it makes me feel so happy to know that she knows of the kindness of strangers.

I truly believe that it is possible for us all to live like this, giving and receiving, but our governments would not survive if we did! wink

Lucifera Tue 27-May-08 16:33:13

Back in 1972 I was just 18, hitching in France with a male friend and almost no money at all; we experienced several RDOK. One was a lift all the way from the Alsace region to Paris, from a young woman who, realising we had nowhere to sleep in the city, gave us floor space in her bedsit - and when we woke in the morning she had already gone to work!
Then just a few months ago, cold dark night, dp and I getting ready to change a wheel outside our house in insalubrious area of London, young man passing by on his way home takes pity on 2 middle-aged women, stops and does it for us v competently in about 10 minutes.
This thread is so lovely!

minniedot Thu 29-May-08 23:15:58

This is one thing I'll always remember.

My mum died when I was 4, my dad ran a pub and very often there would be a lock in. One night I remember sitting in the bar with very drunk people in my nightie, there was some kind of fracas, shouting and fighting and such.

Two young women took me upstairs and tucked me into bed, one of the women kept saying that they should go but the other one was worried about me and didn't want to leave.

That was 36 years ago and I'll never forget that act of kindness.

kitkat9 Tue 03-Jun-08 18:36:16

i love this thread.

have just remembered a recent thing that happened - we had just arrived in America, and still had a hire car. I was driving around, constantly lost (I don't mind that, I was just finding my bearings), when my tire literally blew and the car swerved, I had to steer it to the side of the road.

I had my dc's in the back, it was ROASTING hot, there was a week's worth of shopping in the boot, it was about 5pm and I needed to get home. Needless to say I didn't have my mobile charged up. I was about to go and knock on the door of a nearby house for help, but I didn't even know who I'd call! Anyway, I was getting a wee bit panicky, that kind of frustrated teary way, and the dc's were getting upset, when two lovely hispanic gentlemen approached me, and hardly saying anything they just went about the business of changing my tyre. They barely spoke any English, and when they were done I was thanking them profusely, and trying to offer them money, or the case of beer I had just bought! They refused everything.

If it hadn't been for them I would really have been in bother. Lovele, lovely, kind men. My dh was so impressed he wrote a letter about the whole incident to the Washington Post praising their generosity of spirit, which was published. smile

ALMummy Sun 08-Jun-08 17:02:38

My Mum taking me and my sister through London with three massively heavy suitcases when we were little. First time in the city and we were all scared and she had to leave us at the bottom of a very tall flight of stairs while she carried each of these suitcases up to the top. Young man in a suit came along and ran up the stairs with all our luggage (he had to make three trips) and pointed us in the right direction. Such a small thing but I have always remembered it.

Any one who stops and helps me get my buggy and children up the stairs when I am travelling.

CoffeeAndCarrotCake Fri 05-Dec-08 23:07:15

Only just seen this lovely thread! When I was 19 I was travelling around SE Asia with my then boyfriend. Must have been slightly nuts, as we'd decided to hitch hike from northern Malaysia to Singapore. It was pretty slow going, till a really nice car pulled up and asked where we were going. I said that we wanted to get to the main road a couple of miles away so that we could then hitch straight down to the next town and from there, on to Singapore.

When the driver got to the town, he said that it was such a pity that we were missing some of the best bits of his country, so could he give us a tour?! From about midnight to 2am the three of us had a fantastic time exploring the city of Melaka while the rest of the city slept. Finally, he said that we must not carry on that night, as it was now too late, but dropped us at a hotel and said that we should carry on in the morning. We were knackered, so we thanked him, said goodbye and went inside to get a room.

We had our best nights sleep in weeks and, in the morning, headed downstairs to pay. The receptionist looked confused and said "But you've already paid it!" Our friend was waiting in reception, and having already settled our bill, asked if he could treat us to breakfast at a nearby restaurant before we carried on hitching. We were glad to see him again, and insisted on treating him. As we ate he gave us an envelope: inside were two luxury coach tickets to Singapore, leaving that evening, a short list of things to do in Melaka, and spending money to pay for the rest of our time there!!! He said that his daughter was about my age, and he hoped that if she ever went travelling she'd also be treated with kindness by strangers.

I'm still amazed at how breathtakingly lovely and unbelievably kind that gentleman was, and wish I could let him know that every time I think about acts of kindness, I always picture him - the ultimate example.

DarksomeNight Sat 20-Dec-08 12:49:16

When I was 8 my brother and me were cycling down a big hill and I fell off. (We were racing a tractor - kidshmm) The tractor driver stopped and sent my brother home while he stayed with me til my stepdad came to get me. Stepdad was out for the day so he went to get his car and took me to the hospital and waited til my mum came. Bless.

I have also done some good deeds, though perhaps stupid. Was au pairing in the US and driving to get the children on a school run - now remember mums I was 19 and a bit naieve(sp?) A big fat African American Man had broken down in front of me at the lights and he was a builder doing work at the school I was going to which was up a truly mountainous hill which he would have had to walk up. So I took him <<<whispers>>>>with one of the children in the car <<<<waits for attack of outraged mums>>>>
I had no idea picking up hitchhikers was illegal, and in my defence he wasn't really a hitchhiker and was lovely, and SOOOOO grateful to me. I got fired though as the mum found out and went ballistic.

I don't regret it though.

Kateaw Sat 20-Dec-08 13:06:25

DarksomeNight - its outrageous that you were fired for that. Well done you.

My father uses crutches and can't walk or stand without them. He dropped one when out and about. While struggling with one crutch and trying to make his way towards a nearby tree to lean on and sliding the dropped crutch along the ground, a bus stopped and the driver leapt out, ran over the road and picked it up for him.

A driver once stopped and remonstrated with my ex boyfriend who was walking me home from the pub and had got a bit physical (grabbed me by the shoulders and pushed me against the wall). I am still very grateful to that guy even though I wasn't in any real danger from the exbf who knew fine well how much trouble he would be in if he did hit me.

bracingair Sat 20-Dec-08 23:21:12

What a lovely thread!

I was in Great Ormnond Street with ds 2 days old. He couldnt stop crying all night and the nurses were really rushed off their feet (except to offer formulae - but that deserves its own thread lol). Anyway the women looking after her granddaughter next door came in and took ds for a while so that I could have a break. I will never forget that kindness - i had felt so alone and she and such a difference

Gorionine Sat 20-Dec-08 23:30:23

I was walking to pick up my Dcs from school, pushing the pram with DD4 in, it was very cold and I heard a voice calling me. When I turned arround, there was this nice lady urging me to take the gloves she was handing me. She had just seen me through her window and thought I could do with something warmer on. I thought this was the kindest thing to do to someone you do not know.

MaryMotherOfCheeses Sat 20-Dec-08 23:36:19

My car had broken down on the dual carriageway when DS was about 3 months old.

I was stood there, holding DS, on the hard shoulder waiting for the AA.

Someone else pulled up in the layby. Turned out he was a car mechanic. He and his pregnant girlfriend had been driving on the opposite carriageway. They saw me and pulled off at the next junction then turned round to come back to me.

He fixed my car (turned out to be something very simple) and I was able to drive off.

Lovely, lovely people. They had seen me with the baby and decided to come and help. smile

herbietea Sat 20-Dec-08 23:37:21

Message withdrawn

Simplysally Sat 20-Dec-08 23:47:59

I will always remember the kind German tourists who seeing me sitting down on the spiral staircase inside the tower of Saint Pietro in the Vatican City, offered to help me down the stairs. I am prone to claustrophobia and am also scared of heights and spiral staircases. I got up to the cupola ok but coming down some other tourists behind me were a bit too boisterous for my liking. I had a minor flap and was unable to move so I sat down on the stairs where I was. There was space for people to get past.

Everyone else just streamed past me but these tourists stopped to check I was ok. In the end I realised if someone else had been sitting there I would have hated them so embarassment made me get up.

The other kindness I remember was a few months ago: I caught a train without a seat reservation and plonked myself in any old seat. I had to give this up but the person in the seat next to me gave up his seat for me as I quite frankly looked like death warmed up. He stood in the corridor for over an hour until a seat became free.

Thank you so much to the people concerned .

jingleMAMADIVAsbells Sun 21-Dec-08 00:02:17

When I was 15 my dog was about 10 weeks and I took her out a walk up past a main road but there was a huge grassy hill upfrom it so I let her off the lead (admittedly stupid)and she ran off the hill and straight down towards the road by the bus stop and there was a bus coming, a random man just lunged toward her and grabbed her whilst he thudded towards the ground he basically saved her life.

I thanked him and later saw him at the bus stop on crutches, he had badly hurt his hip bone in the fall I think I said thanks to him every time I saw him.

pantomimEDAMe Sun 21-Dec-08 00:03:08

I once fainted in the street in Camden. A nice lady came running out of a cafe, picked me up, dusted me off and sat me down with a huge pot of tea and stern instructions NOT to move until I was feeling better.

Dh is very good at RAOK, far too many to list here. Sadly when he was severely depressed, he lost this part of himself. I knew he was on the mend when he was late to pick me up and explained he'd had to stop on the way because he'd driven past a biker who had managed to fall off. Dh turned round and went back to help - seems the guy had managed to trap the hem of his jeans under the bike stand so was completely helpless and unable to get out.

When dh explained why he was late, I was THRILLED because I knew he was getting better

WalkingInAWonderStuffingLand Sun 21-Dec-08 01:01:05

I was visiting my friend, she had her new baby in a sling and I had dd in a buggy, dd was about 6mo, her dog ran off and was hit by a car, my friend was a pieces, and I had only just arrived and had no idea how to get back to her house, a couple in a house nearby had seen the crash, they took my friend and her dog to the vets, and a young lad who was passing walked me and the babies back to my friends house because I didn't know the way, we were about 30 mins away from home and he had to go totally out of his way. I don't know what we would have done without these people.

TisTheSeasonToBeSolo Sun 21-Dec-08 01:28:20

When I was about 14, I was out on my bike with my brother when I misjudged trying to bump up a kerb(at the wrong angle)I fell off and hurt myself and a lady rushed out of her house, taking me and Db into her house where she fed me tea and rang my Dad to come and pick us up.
Recently(this week), I have had so much kindness from several complete strangers that I am astounded. Because of their kindness, my Dc's will have Christmas gifts to open next week. Thank you to those wonderful people smile you know who you are.

Aw, this is my favourite thread ever, especially nice to read at this time of year....love it!! grin

CrushWithEyeliner Sun 21-Dec-08 15:43:46

Aw this thread has been revived for Christmas - fab I am so proud of starting it grin

lottien Sun 21-Dec-08 17:14:02

There have been loads:

-pg standing on the bus to work and not brave enough to ask people to give me a seat, one of the other passengers asked for me (and made the people who had been pretending my huge lump didn't exist feel really bad into the bargain!).

The first time I took DD back to England (at 4 weeks) we flew. I was on my own and very nervous. Of course she cried and I could see all the other passengers getting tense. I managed to get her bfing and got her to sleep. As we were getting off the plane the man in front of me turned round and just said "well done!". Those two words made me feel fantastic!

When DD was 2 I was seduced by a Eurostar offer to travel in first class for 10euros extra. As we got in to the carriage (which was full of quiet, posh people) she started bawling and I knew that I was faced with 3 hours of disapproving looks so I asked the hostess if we could stay in the lobby outside the carriage (DD in her pushchair and me on the tippy seat). Instead she got the train manager's permission for us to travel in the little staff room where they usually eat their lunch. So I got my first class travel and DD got to make as much noise as she wanted.

An exboyf and I got stuck in a little town in the Pyrennees after missing the last train. All the hotels were full (or at least said they were to a couple of scruffy and foolish backpackers). We went to the campsite where they let us camp without a tent and because we had no food and the camp shop was closed, the woman running the site did the rounds of the camp and came back with bread, milk, sausage and lots of other bits and pieces. Then our neighbours invited us in for coffee. I remind myself of this whenever I come across unkind French people (which happens!).

HeadFairy Sun 21-Dec-08 17:21:43

One recently sticks in my mind. It wasn't a massive gesture but it was really kind and I haven't forgotten it. I was in the supermarket queuing with ds to pay for our bits and bobs. There was a massive queue, eventually I got to the front and the old woman behind me tapped me on the shoulder said to me "do you know those kitchen rolls are on two for one offer?" I thought about it for a minute but then it was my turn to go, it was pretty close to ds' tea time so I just said "oh well it's my turn to pay now, never mind" and she said "here, take mine, I'll go and get another one and queue again". Small gesture but it was so sweet. Doesn't happen often in this world. I think about her all the time, I hope she's happy and well.

SmileyMylee Sun 21-Dec-08 19:15:09

Was away for the weekend with DH and DD1 (8 months) and had a call that my mother who had terminal cancer had taken a turn for the worse and I should come straight away. We were about 250 miles away and set off straight away.

50 miles in the car broke down. The rescue service turned up and drove us to the nearest garage. The car was not immediately repairable and we were told to come back the next day. One of the men was finishing his shift. His father had died of cancer the following week and this was his first day back. He immediately loaded our car onto his recovery vehicle and drove us to the hospital 200 miles away and then took our car to a local garage.

Without that act of kindness I wouldn't have seen my mother before she died or be able to be with her when she did.

KateF Sun 21-Dec-08 19:42:01

This is a lovely thread. 4 years ago dd2 was very ill and our GP had just taken blood to test for leukaemia. I was in bits and struggling to think of something to cook for dd1 for tea when a lady from toddlers knocked on the door with a meal already prepared. Thankfully dd2 turned out to have a chronic viral infection and gradually recovered but it was such a kind thought.

trumpetgirl Sun 21-Dec-08 20:31:23

When dd was 2yo, she was recovering from a stomach bug and I had tonsilitus. The electricity ran out and I needed to go and top up my key. It was about 6 or 7 pm and I had to walk for half an hour to get to the petrol station to top it up. When I got there, they said the machine was broken, and the nearest place that would be able to do it was about 15 miles away. I broke down in tears. I didn't know anyone with a car, or anyone who would help me. Behind me in the queue, there was a taxi driver who took pity on me. He drove me there and back, and didn't expect anything in return. I asked for his address so that I could pay him back, but he refused. Without him a weeks worth of food would've been wasted, and I would've had to live without electricity until 10am!
Thank you random taxi man grin

WalkingInAWonderStuffingLand Sun 21-Dec-08 21:49:00

Such a great thread. Makes me think of my grandfather, at his funeral on the order of service it said 'If he could he did' which really summed him up. Now my grandmother is ill, family all live a long way away, but she seems to be surrounded by good people who will go the extra mile to help her out, she says that she thinks my grandpa is looking down, helping her out, I think she is right in a way, people remember his kindness and all these people he touched are now rallying round for her, so in a way he's still looking after her.

Smiley that story made me cry. What an amazing person.

Danae Sun 21-Dec-08 22:35:11

Message withdrawn

mamalovesmincepiesANDmojitos Sun 21-Dec-08 23:00:06

beautiful stories.

when i was roughly seventeen myself and a friend stupidly decided to hitch a lift (for a journey of about 200 miles).

a flashy car pulled up and a gorgeous man invited us in. he told us that it wasn't really safe for us to travel with strangers and that he couldn't leave us there.

he played us music, chatted away to us and when we stopped halfway bought us coffees and cakes. he brought us the whole way and was so kind.

thank you wherever you are.

Leedsmum2b Wed 31-Dec-08 15:43:31

While pregnant earlier this year, I had to visit London most weeks - say about 30 Tube journeys in all.

I never once had to ask for a seat on the Tube, there was always a lovely person who offered me theirs!

unavailable Mon 05-Jan-09 18:11:49

Just found this lovely thread - here's mine..
Many years ago, when hugely pregnant with ds, I rashly decided to go Xmas shopping in the West End. Bad decision - it was heaving. I got badly jostled and a bit disorientated which made me step off the curb and into the path of a cyclist. He screeched to a holt, and then shouted at me before cycling off. I promptly burst into tears. A woman passing took pity on me, and took me to her office just off Oxford Street. I sat in her (very plush) office and drank tea. She even offered me money to get a cab home to North London, but I couldnt accept.

Jujubean77 Fri 04-Dec-09 15:32:37

This is a lovely thread this time of year x smile

lisalisa Sun 06-Dec-09 22:33:35

Yes it quite restores your faith in mankind doesn't it?

E45 Tue 08-Dec-09 19:54:59

Unless your name is LisaLisa and you have not established whether you were Ghosty's angel. hmm angry

lisalisa Tue 08-Dec-09 23:02:25

sorry? Your point in the rolleyes and angry face is?

NancyDrewRocks Mon 28-Dec-09 14:16:19

Well were you??? Two years later I think we need to know smile!

ThumbleBells Mon 28-Dec-09 14:31:43

I had just had a collision with a very slow-moving bike (he didn't even notice) and I ended up in the middle of the road in rush hour traffic with my bike between my legs, unable to get up. A lovely man stopped his car, removed the bike for me and offered to take me to hospital. I was going to the GP's surgery for my first ever appt there, so he threw my bike into the back of his Lada estate (I have never laughed at those since) and drove to my GP's surgery. He even put the chain back on my bike for me so I could cycle home after.

I had his name and knew where he had come from workwise, so I dropped off a box of Roses for him later.

ilove Tue 29-Dec-09 11:44:19

Brilliant thread

Every man who, when seeing me struggling to push my mate's wheelchair up a hill at Alton Towers, would come up, take the chair from me and get us up the hill It made such a difference, whenever we went. It's easy at the start of the day but by the end I was always dead on my feet!

That was about a year ago, we've both been at college/uni on demanding courses so haven't seen each other for ages, so we're having a catch-up soon.

About 5 years ago, when on a school holiday in Italy, I got seperated from the group. I'm visually impaired, didn't speak a lot of Italian, and 3 men, each tried to help me, eventually handing me over to a policeman, and then the daughter of the teacher running the trip spotted me. I was in tears and so, so scared!

I try and help whenever I can, I'll direct people, pick things up for people if they drop them etc. But I've not done anything that's ever truly made a difference.

Actually, I tell a lie, I might have! I was on the bus home from work (Alton Towers, this year was my 2nd working there) and a lady was sat next to me, we got chatting, and she said her son had ASD. I began giving her every bit of info I could think of that would help in future visits to the park, and happened to mention the Mumsnet SN board. I don't know whether she joined, but if you did, I'm that lady that spoke to you and helped you when you needed to get from the bus station to the train station.

Oh, and in my first year at Towers, I was working on the admissions gate, and a lady came to my mate sobbing, wanting to make a complaint.

Turns out she'd had a really long walk from the carparks, and had lung and liver cancer, as well as a daughter with ASD. Me and my colleague, along with a Guest Relations person, sorted the lady out with wristbands to help get on the rides, got her a wheelchair as she couldn't walk far, and sat with her while the wheelchair was found, going into our lunch break.

I didn't expect any reward for it, and didn't get any, no problem there. Major problem was when I found out 2 girls got employee of the month for counting cars in and out of the place Made me question that whole system and brought to the fore, a serious bout of favoritism (the girls had worked there the year before too), and also a cynicism about the whole employee of the month system.

FultonMcKay Tue 05-Jan-10 12:19:41

Awww - BUMP! Looks like it has been a good year since this thread was revived and, having just came across it I think it deserves to be bumped!

My RAOK was when my son crashed into my DD's head on a slide in a soft play area here in Manila. He ended up biting off nearly half of his tongue. Screaming and blood everywhere!!! We were quite new to the city and didn't know where the hospital was. The manager of the soft play didn't know either but got in the car with us and asked loads of people until we found it. I knew that it was because she probably felt guilty as it had happened in her place but was glad. She put my DD and (visiting) in-laws in a cab and sent them home then got us to the front of the queue. I kept trying to shoo her away but she insisted on staying and even helped us to hold him down while his tongue was stitched.

She tried to pay for it all but we insisted. While DH was away getting the anti-bs she sat with me and I made conversation about how lovely and new the hospital was. She completely broke down and told me how difficult it was to be there as the year before her gorgeous 4 year old boy (same age as my DS) had to be brought here when he had a massive heart attack but he died. I was so touched that she stayed with us even though it must have been so very awful for her. I can't tell anyone that story without welling up.

MilkNoSugarPlease Wed 17-Feb-10 22:04:47

lisalisa cmon now!

grapeandlemon Thu 02-Sep-10 16:47:52

I love this thread

SupposedToBeWorking Thu 02-Sep-10 22:31:14

Driving by myself up the east coast of America, 13 years ago. I stopped for lunch at a motorway diner. When I asked for the bill, the waitress said my lunch had already been paid for, by a trucker who'd then driven off up the freeway. She had no idea who he was.

Longer ago than that, when I was about 17, Interflora came to the door with a mahoosive bouquet. Honestly, the biggest bunch of flowers I had ever seen. I was SO disappointed when they weren't even for our house but for a 'Miss Brown' - not me, not my mum, not even a neighbour. Me and my mum and my boyfriend's mum who was round for tea spent ages trying to help the delivery man work out who the flowers were for, because even the address was only a vague description of a rough area of our wiggly village.

Interflora man came back an hour later, having gone back to the shop and phoned the client. Client had apologised for inadequate instructions, admitted that he didn't know my name or the name of our house, but confirmed that flowers were for me (me! ME!). I never found out anything more than that it was someone who drove past me on my morning walk to school. (School coat was brown. Apparently I was supposed to understand the code.)

Next day I got a nowhere-near-as-enormous bunch of flowers not at all anonymously from my somewhat put out boyfriend, whose mum hadn't stopped going on about my secret admirer all evening grin

fatheadsgirl Fri 03-Sep-10 20:49:11

My secondary school tutor kitted me out in school uniform when I was in year ten as my mum was AWOL and my Dad didn't get it (I was working a a silver service waitress and he felt that I should be providing for myself but I'd spent all my money on my brothers school stuff). I had no idea she woud do that, it actually made me cry. Ten years on and she still writes to me to make sure i'm ok smile

Maybee Fri 03-Sep-10 20:55:26

On a train through Spain in the middle of the night myself and my friend met a nice Irish guy. We'd been talking about how little money we had before we discovered he was also Irish. We chatted long into the night and just before we got off the train he gave us all his pesetas in change as he was en route to france. We almost wept with joy!

bluejeans Fri 03-Sep-10 21:50:05

OMG fatheadsgirl sad shock smile

I have just discovered this thread for the first time and read it all with a lump in my throat.

When I was about 10 my sis & I were playing on a really muddy building site (1970's). We got stuck thigh deep and were panicking as there was no-one around. An elderly couple living nearby heard our screams and rescued us, dug out my lost wellie, and took us back to their house where they cleaned us up and gave us tea and sandwiches.

I live by 'treat others the way you would like to be treated' and love love love RAOK smile

Greedygirl Thu 23-Sep-10 23:15:36

Just discovered the classic threads and had to add this (although is very trivial compared to many of the stories on here)...when my DS was very tiny and screaming his head off at the checkout in the local supermarket, an older gentleman said "that is the loveliest sound in the world". I thought he was being sarcastic but he went on to explain how he thought a babies cry was beautiful because it was pure and without malice. Actually I am making him sound a bit barking now grin but he made a new and red faced mum feel fab and less embarrassed and that was one of the kindest things anyone said after my DS was born.

hmc Thu 23-Sep-10 23:25:40

Hate to spoil the vibe but i can mostly recall random acts of unkindness rather than kindness sad

jonicomelately Thu 23-Sep-10 23:33:13

I was in a nightclub in Paris. It was an African place and jammed packed, hot with very little air. I was starting to struggle with atmosphere, felt really weird, then suddenly couldn't see a thing. A really kind man who realised I was in trouble guided me out of the place. Even though I was really frightened and couldn't understand him he was incredibly reassuring. He stayed with me until my friend found me. He was so kind and I'll never forget that.

toomuchmonthatendofthemoney Fri 24-Sep-10 01:18:22

when i was 13, i started my first period suddenly while out in a shopping centre. I was in pain, scared and embarrassed, staggered to the toilets where there was a mahoosive queue. Honestly thought i might faint.

A lovely kind old lady who was at the front of the Q noticed my distress, put me in the next free cubicle and told me to wait 5 minutes. She returned with some baby wipes, some sanitary towels and a pack of pants. Once i was cleaned up and came back out, she took me to the cafe and bought me some juice and made sure i was ok and had money for the bus home (i did, but i'm sure she would have given that to me too). I was so mortified i'm not sure if i even thanked her properly but i have never forgotten her gentle, caring voice.

piprabbit Fri 24-Sep-10 02:14:23

The porter who regularly pushed me from ward to scan during my 2 month stay in hospital (I was very ill). He called me 'smiler' and always seemed genuinely pleased to see me again, would tell me I was looking better and generally make me feel like a human being instead of a sick carcass.

The wonderful nurse on the mixed gynae ward where I was having an op to remove an ectopic pregnancy. She saw through me, desperately trying to keep it together, and without saying a word let me know that she knew how tough I was finding it. She slowly and carefully explained what had happened and showed me the notes from the operation. then she stood over the junior doctor and instructed him to write me a sick note for 6 weeks off work. I often think about her and wonder if she had experienced something similar or if she was simply a very good nurse.

thumbwitch Fri 24-Sep-10 02:33:05

Nice to see this thread out and about again.

I have another one - when I was 11, just started at secondary school, I took the bus to school for the first time. For some obscure reason, when school ended, I got on the bus from the same bus stop I had got off that morning - and so ended up going the wrong way. I got off after about 3 or 4 stops and was completely disorientated - no idea where I was at all. Highly distressed, I looked to see if I had any money to phone my mum - but I only had 2p and you needed 10p to make the call (sooooo long ago! grin) A lovely old lady saw my distress, asked the problem and promptly gave me 10p, plus a few extra 2ps as well. Not a big thing, maybe - but it sticks with me.

MilkNoSugarPlease Fri 24-Sep-10 09:17:44

I was working last week (Am a nanny) and had one of those days from hell
Had to drop one charge off somewhere, on the tube with a 9yo and a 1y in a buggy

Spent the whole journey there being shoved and pushed and grunted at, 9y being pushed everywhere etc when he helped with the buggy!

on the way back (minus 9yo) the "up" escalator had broken down...its huge! hundreds of "steps"...I had to take a sleeping 1yo out of the buggy, then transfer everything from the buggy into various bags (Its a Mac.quest...refuses to fold if anything DARES be in the basket hmm...then trying to fold buggy up ready to go up the escalator....all while trying not to wake the baby and with everyong shoving past....

this lovely lovely man was coming down the escalato, got off, picked up all the stuff walked backup the escalator with it, got the buggy open and helped me put bags on etc, then turned around and went back down the escalator to catch his tube

He completly and utterly made my day....thank you random tube man

hmc Fri 24-Sep-10 23:49:44

Actually I do remember one (just the one!) - I had PND at the time, didn't realise until later, and a 6 month old in a pushchair plus 2.3 year old wilful dd. Was at DLL (usually populated with twunts)...went to get out of the lift and something (can't remember what)set dd off - she lay on the floor and tantrummed, whilst people stepped over her and looked at me scathingly. I couldn't think what to do. A woman got out of the lift and started talking to dd, engaged her completely and got her out of her tantrum. I was so relieved I could have kissed her (and I am definitely not given to over demonstrative displays of affection). It doesn't sound much but this woman radiated empathy, it was like she could see inside me and how desperate I was feeling (had been feeling for a while). I expect she has forgotten all about it now, but I haven't

What a really lovely thread. Have been in (nice) tears over so many of these.

About a year ago, I lost my wallet, with all my cards, a bit of cash, and a few sentimental things in it. I then got a message through Facebook from the guy who had found it in the street and tracked me down to return it to me. Thank you, kind man!

Rosedee Tue 23-Nov-10 08:49:17

When I had ds he was put to the boob everytime he cried and I buzzed for help which was great but I was exhausted. Been awake for 36 hours, very painful slightly traumatic labour and I was exhausted. Really nice nurse came and sat next to me as was getting upset and worried I'd drop him as was so tired. She said if I wanted them to take him for an hour they would so I could rest. She left me and not long after he started to cry again. I buzzed. She just walked into cubicle, took one look at me and wheeled him away. So so grateful.

perfectstorm Mon 03-Jan-11 20:50:17

We tried for a baby for ages and nothing happened. Then I lost my job, DH's was threatened, which would have meant our house - and I found out I was pregnant with DS.

I bought a baby sleeping bag from Ebay and the woman sent me two, and a message via saying she hoped that was okay and I didn't mind. I emailed back thanking her profusely and saying we were not in the best position financially so actually I was hugely grateful - and then she sent me all her gorgeous, barely-worn baby clothes from 0 - 6 months, with the loveliest message imaginable. Not patronising or pitying, very positive on how her son was a late-in-life unplanned surprise and how he was the best thing she had ever done. It was one of those moments when the genuine, unforced, altruistic kindness of a total stranger makes you feel like you can handle something that overwhelmed you before. It was one of the sweetest and most thoughtful things. If she is on Mumsnet, I hope she knows what that meant to me, and does even 3 years on (and those things have now gone to another mother who was struggling financially, too).

I could have been that lady Ghosty I probably wasnt but I have comforted many sobbing paents in the pead ward and many have comforted me. smile

I will also always be greatfull and thnakfull to a group of mners from the Nov 2006 antenatal group, I was run into the ground and they got up a little fund for dp and I to take the kids to Butlins for a few days. It was bloody fantastic and I will never forget it.

CheerfulYank Sun 01-May-11 12:02:29

Just read this thread start to finish and am crying. It's so lovely!

I work at a school as a 1:1. The girl I work with has ASD. Last Friday during gym, the kids were supposed to run around the track twice. She made it once and a half and then got upset. I started to go over to her but one of the boys beat me to it. He's already (at 9 years old) the "coolest boy in school", fantastic at sports and all that. He jogged over to her, took her hand, told her she could do it, and ran the rest of the way with her. I had to turn away because I was sniffling!

Also, every time they have to pick partners, he picks her. One of the other children asked him why he did that in a snide voice, and he simply said, "I don't want her to feel like she doesn't have any friends. She does." He is a star, this kid! smile

billybobchilly Mon 16-May-11 19:54:14

On a really warm day at the end of the summer my son was 6 years old money was very tight and we were in ASDA to buy a coat for the new school year. I was trying to persuade him that the coat he was trying on was fine and not too warm - in other words it had to do because I could not afford to go elsewhere. A rather rotund man with a white beard appeared pushing a trolley, bent down to my son and said, "Santa thinks it's great." The look on my son's face was utterly priceless - made even better by the fact that when he gathered himself to go to the end of the aisle to look, the man had disappeared. Such a wonderfully weird thing to do.

whackamole Thu 26-May-11 22:37:49

The only one I can really remember was sitting in the car, 8pm a few days before Xmas when the car had broken down, 100 miles from home and 100 miles from our destination. There was about a foot of snow on the ground, the AA probably wouldn't be with us for 2 hours and with 5 of us in the car (3 kids!) I was a mess.

We were not on a busy road, but the only person who stopped was a lady on her own in - bless her - an Audi TT. She was the only person who stopped and asked if we needed help or could she arrange for a tow. Was so nice of her, but luckily the AA showed up shortly after.

Sadly I can mainly remember the times when people haven't helped, mostly when they have walked round me struggling with a double buggy and shopping etc.

mrsinkpen Tue 31-May-11 01:14:32

What a lovely, heartbreaking and amazing thread.

On the way to get on a ferry for a holiday couple of years ago we ran out of petrol on the way and just about managed to get off the motorway onto a small side road in the middle of nowhere. It was the early hours of the morning and there was no traffic on the road. We were running out of time to get to the ferry in time. Out of nowhere a passing motorist stopped to help us. Drove out of his way to take DH to the service station to buy a can of petrol and then drove him all the way back. We were so grateful and he wouldn’t take anything as a reward. Said his reward would be if we could ever help someone else in trouble. Thank you.

Also, the amazing lady who shared her hotel room with my dd; stuck because of the ash cloud and facing the possibility of spending a scary night alone on a deserted European train station platform. She came back for her especially. What a lovely example to set to a young adult (indeed to anybody) and we will be eternally grateful. Thank you.

Cathycat Tue 31-May-11 01:51:53

I always think of mum. A lady at her till was short of 50p. She cried, the poor love. Mum said not to worry - owe it back. They became good friends. My mums till was short that day - my mum wasnt very well off either!

stubbornstains Thu 09-Jun-11 15:22:09

I have experienced so many random acts of kindness over the years, especially in my years as a penniless scruff hitchhiking around Europe, but 2 spring to mind: one was when I spent ages painfully reversing into a really tight parking spot in a car park in Poole, making a right pig's ear of it. I had no idea anyone had been watching me, but came back to find a card with a heart on it tucked under the windscreen wiper, with "Well done!" written on the back..!

The second was when i was v.v. pregnant, the road was icy and ungritted, and my van basically ended up sliding down it-sideways-getting pretty much wedged on a blind bend. A random passing lady (this was the middle of nowhere) called the local farm, who sent their "boys" out on a big green tractor, to tow the van safely into a layby. I took them some beer afterwards.

ShoeJunkie Sun 12-Jun-11 09:37:33

Just found this thread in classics - I'm crying now too!

Wanted to add my own too.

A couple of years ago when we had some really heavy snow in the south east I got stuck on the A3 on my way home from work. I was on my own, no food or drink, phone almost out of battery and no idea how long we would be stuck.
Got out of the car and started chatting to a lorry driver, he offered for me and another woman to sit in his (heated) cab, offered us food (he had a microwave in there!), let me charge my phone and help to dig my car out at 4am when we finally started moving again.

Cutiecat Fri 05-Aug-11 00:19:37

A few years ago my ds (3) and I were struck down with a bad bug on a flight to miami. I had an 'accident' in my trousers on the plane and when we got to the hotel late at night he started being violently sick. DD (10 mths) was fine but totally disorientated due to the flight etc so was being very clingy. DH had gone to try to buy some nappies from an all night supermarket and I was at my wits end.

I had called housekeeping to get some more bed linen as DS had been sick on it and the most wonderful woman turned up with the linen. She could see that i was struggling and took DS into the bathroom, striped off his pjs and gave him a bath. I calmed DD down and got her to sleep then this wonderful lady changed the beds and tucked DS in. She then bundled up all our dirty laundry (including my stuff from the flight) and told me to pick it up the next day from the laundry down the road rather than the hotel which was blooming expensive. She must have dropped it off for me on her way home.

When DH returned I just cried when i told him about this wonderful woman and we told the manager of the hotel about her and left her a thank you.

Another one was when in labour with DS. I had been admitted due to pre-eclampsia so was on my own DH had been sent home for the night. The next morning i was in active labour and i was starting to spin out and panic. A lady was walking past my room and came in and held me, breathing with me and telling me i was going to be ok. I have no idea if she was a midwife or a cleaner but she made me feel that i could cope. I never saw her again, she was like an angel.

Lastly we were house hunting in a new area and DS had a wee accident in the car (he is quite good really, not presenting him in the best light). i stopped in what is now our local tesco carpark and was mopping up his car seat and a lady walked over and handed me a pair of pants and some trousers. I told her i didn't live nearby to return them but she just told me to kep them. We were living in central london at the time and i think it made me decide that i did want to move out.

Must pay it forward tomorrow.

Cutiecat Fri 05-Aug-11 00:36:18

One more was in the same tescos mentioned above. I had forgotten my purse and was standing at the till with all my shopping when a mum from DS's school offered to pay for it for me. I didn't know her at all as her DD was in yr 6 when DS was in reception, she just recognised me from the playground. So lovely of her, i paid her back and gave her some chocolate.

LaLaLoopsie Fri 05-Aug-11 04:37:48

What a lovely, heart-warming thread. So often,you only ever seen to hear about how badly people treat each other (I guess it's the something good, tell one person, something bad, tell 10 rule), so it's nice to read so many tales of people reaching out to help complete strangers.

My own is the lovely BA Cabin Service Director who moved me into Business Class when I flew from Singapore to Sydney at six months pregnant and suffered agonising back-pain. It was impossible for me to sit comfortably in economy and the only thing that relieved the pain was to lie down flat. I was in tears, exhausted and emotional, and thought I'd end up having to stand most of the flight.

Lovely crew made me a cup of tea, rubbed my back and got me a hot-water bottle to help relieve the pain. Flight was absolutely packed but they managed to sort out a seat in Business and I was able to lie down for the rest of the flight. CSD checked on me every so often to make sure I was okay.

I was so, so grateful for their time and thoughtfulness.

Columbia999 Fri 05-Aug-11 05:42:33

When I was in hospital after having a mastectomy in 2001, I was feeling very sorry for myself a couple of days after the operation; hair was manky and I just felt totally rotten and scared. A lovely auxiliary nurse came to talk to me and offered to help me to have a bath and hairwash. I felt so helpless and weak, so it was wonderful to have someone to do this for me. She told me that this was the sort of nursing she signed up for, rather than all the form filling and other bureaucratic stuff that they mostly had to do. I was discharged before she was on duty again, but I'll never forget her kindness.
Nine years later, in hospital again for two major operations, I was having a weepy episode, as I was in so much pain, and they hadn't brought the meds round yet. An angel of a woman in my bay, who had been told the day before that she was going to die soon, as they couldn't do anything to help her with her brain tumour; she was the first person over to give me a hug and some reassuring words. She passed away a few weeks later. I'm filling up just thinking about it, I'll never forget her.
During the same time, a lovely person from another forum, whom I'd only met once briefly, made a 150 mile round trip to come and see me.
My fab former workmates came to see me regularly in hospital, and when I came home. They once brought round a picnic to my flat, including drinks, napkins, plastic cutlery and paper plates, even a tablecloth.

When I was travelling alone last year, on the train from Guangzhou to Lhasa, I woke in the night feeling terrible (it was altitude sickness). I managed to stagger to the bathroom but when I came out I suddenly went blind and completely lost the ability to walk. This kind Chinese man saw that I was in trouble (I was clinging to the wall, I couldn't move), helped me onto a bunk, and went to fetch the train guards. He also woke up a friend who spoke a little English and could translate for me, since I don't speak any Chinese. The guards were obviously rather worried about me but my sight came back fairly quickly so they just gave me some oxygen and left me to it.

The next day the whole carriage had apparently heard that I was ill - people kept coming to check that I was OK, and a lovely girl gave me some herbal medicine. My saviour from the night came back to take my picture, and gave me his address and phone number in case I ever needed anything. I'll never forget how kind they all were.

thefirstmrsrochester Fri 05-Aug-11 21:57:02

the wee auxiliary on the gyne ward where i was recovering from a fairly major procedure was my angel in disguise - sick as a pig post operative, reaction to the general, miserable as could be, was out of it when the card for dinner options came round for 3 days. Day four, missed the cards again but was feeling better - must have looked wistful as the meal cart came round - lovely lovely auxilliary asked me if I was hungry and hustled off and made me sandwiches from her own stash & went and got me a can of cola from the hospital shop.
felt like crying with gratitude. I probably did a bit.

yellowraincoat Fri 05-Aug-11 22:03:45

Not sure if it quite fits, but the thing that gets me through sometimes is a letter a student wrote to me once. I had been teaching her at summer school, she was part of a group of lovely Spanish kids who had been paid by the govt to come over here and learn English.

I have since lost the letter, a wanker ex binned it with all my stuff, but it was so nice. She said that i had made her see that growing up didn't mean having to give up being fun and that she was less scared of growing up because of me.

She obv didn't know how much that meant to me, as I have so little self confidence and it made me so happy to know that I had helped her. I so wish i still had that letter but the memory of it always makes me cry/smile.

wasabipeanut Fri 05-Aug-11 22:16:09

Earlier this year my Father was in hospital 2 days after recieving a lung cancer diagnosis and I walked in to visit to find my Mother laying on the floor by his bed having a seizure. I couldn't breathe properly for a minute but the elderly wife of the very ill man in the bay next to my Dad put her hand over mine and said "you have to be strong for your Dad." For a minute I put my other hand over hers and got so much strength from her. Her husband was not much longer for this world and she managed to find some time for me.

I will never forget her.

Rollersara Sun 07-Aug-11 09:28:26

I'm disabled and walk on crutches. When I first fell ill I lost a lot of weight so was very thin. One day I was out with a friend in Manchester. I was struggling to walk to the cinema, so we decided it was easier for him to go on and get tickets while I carried on walking at my own, painfully slow, pace. A man came out of a shop and ran up to me, thrusting a carrier bag from said shop into my hand, saying, "I thought you could use these!". He went off before I could see what it was.

My friend came back to find me crying and laughing at the same time, wondering why I was now carrying a bag full of chocolate bars!

HappyHippyChick Thu 18-Aug-11 12:36:57

When we were buying our "forever" house my dh and I fell in love with a house. The lady who owned the house was in when we looked around and we had a little chat with her about how her family had lived there 40 years and been very happy.

We put an offer in although we had been told there had been lots of offers already, and when the estate agent phoned to tell us our offer had been accepted he also told me that ours wasn't the highest offer, but the lady had really liked us and wanted us to have the house.

We have lived here nearly 6 years now and living here has made such a big positive impact on our lives, I often think of that lovely lady.

Shoutymomma Thu 18-Aug-11 12:42:34

Shortly after my second child was born, I found a bag in my porch. Attached to it was a note that siad something like "Breast feeding mothers should make sure they keep up their intake of dairy products. Here they are." Inside was a home made cheesecake. This had come from somone who was quite a new friend and she had deliberately not rung to bell for fear of disturbing anyone. This might not sound life changing, but it was... we are now best buds.

mazzi2fly Thu 18-Aug-11 20:49:13

When I was newly married, (and moved down to the South East from Scotland), my car broke down on the way to work. Recovery came and took the car to the garage and dropped me at the station, to get the train to work. I bought my ticket and phoned my DH to let know what had happened.

As I was on the phone, the train came into the station. I hopped on board and settled down for the journey. When the ticket man came to check my ticket, he said I was on the wrong train! Instead of getting a slow train to London and stopping at the village station I'd have to change at, I'd got on the fast service that didn't stop until Victoria in London!

I sat back thinking "Ah well, I'll have to go to London and back out again. I'm going to be really late for work now". A few minutes later, the ticket man came back and said "Quick, follow me!" I jumped up and ran after him all down the train.

He got the train to stop just for me at this little village station and then it shot off again, up to London.

It wasn't until later that I realised what a major thing he'd done for me. It saved me a lot of time, and I wasn't too late for work.

TheOriginalFAB Thu 18-Aug-11 20:59:37

I ran away from a job in the middle of the night. I rang the doorbell of someone's house who had their light on but they answered and wouldn't help me. I found the train station and a lady gave me all the money she had so I could get home. Home was 200+ miles away. I got to London Victoria but BR wouldn't help me so I walked the streets of London at 3am. The guard at the coach station gave me money for a coach home. I always remember the woman but not the man so much as I dated him for a while and then he hit me so I don't have fond memories of him.

When DS was two he shut his finger in the front door and it was hanging on by the skin only. I threw him in the car with a bag of peas tied round said finger with a muslin nappy and drove. Being school run rush hour, every road around Wandsworth Common was jammed.

I whizzed down one road on the wrong side and came to the lights. A chap (himself taking his DC to school) came to my window to ask what was wrong. I managed to tell him that child and finger weren't completely together and he basically ordered me to get DS, sit in his car, parked my car (leaving note for the over zealous wardens and police) and drove us to St. George's A&E. He then took his children to school (now late) and reappeared in the waiting room where he sat and refused to go until DS had come out of surgery 2 hours later. Once DS was out of recovery, he went to get lunch/drinks, and waited with us until DS was discharged that evening. Drove us home, then went and collected my car.

Almost 13 years later he and his wife, and children, have remained very very good friends. Before that day I had never seen one of them before.

AnnaBegins Fri 19-Aug-11 22:08:22

Oh I love this thread!!
Recently I had my purse stolen, abroad, from a church. It had all my money in it as I'd only just arrived in that country, plus cards, and most importantly my train tickets for when I got home. I had nothing and was there for 10 days. What was worse was that I'd had to get an overdraft to afford holiday money in the first place, so I literally had nothing. Random members of the congregation gave money to the priest to give to me, it all spiralled as more people heard what had happened and wanted to help too, and when I added it up it was almost as much as I'd lost! It turned a disaster holiday into a good holiday, and I even had some left over which went to charity once I'd got home. I can't believe the kindness of those people.

BagofHolly Wed 24-Aug-11 15:29:40

I suffer from a really bad back which goes into spasms sometimes without warning. I was struggling out of my local Tesco, nearly weeping in pain trying to push my trolley when an older man with white hair in a ponytail, appeared next to me and helped me. He was chatting to me, saying his back was bad too but it was ok as most of his work was seasonal. He had a bit of a tummy, and a happy smiley face and a white beard. He gently steered me by the elbow to my car and I said "it's the driving that hurts my back." He sympathised and said "hmm, for me, it's the chimneys"!

Totally made my day!

JobCarHouseNoBaby Wed 24-Aug-11 16:17:53

This thread is lovely!

I was wandering in a hungover state of mind though the town centre on a busy Saturday morning. I thought a road was a pedestrian only zone so wandered blindly into the road to get to Primark blush. Little did I realise there was a bus RIGHT THERE and would have run me over if a young teenage boy dressed head to toe in black with horrible ear piercings hadn't pulled me back by pulling my t-shirt, so vigorously we ended up in an awkward heap on the floor.

TheOriginalFAB Wed 24-Aug-11 17:33:37

I am mortified that I have only just thought of this. blush

Last year I was having a difficult time in real life and finding MN too hard to take. A lovely poster (who incidently I haven't seen around for ages sad) galvanised a collection and my door bell rang heralding a massive bunch of flowers. I was barely over the shock when it went again and it was the biggest hamper of chocolates I had ever seen. All from some of the lovely people who post on here and the card with them meant everything. It said From your friends at MN.

Thank you again to you all smile.

Bigglewinkle Mon 05-Sep-11 18:32:40

Ooh I'd like to add mine to the collection.
When I was very small (about 4 or 5) I smiled at an old lady who was selling plums in a market in germany; she gave me her last bag of plums. It taught me the power of a smile.

When I was 20something, my dad lent me his car, saying airily that the tyres would need changing at some point hmm. Well I set off on a 150mile journey and about 20miles in the back tyre blew on the motorway and I was lucky I had got to the hard shoulder ok. A BMW driver saw what happened and changed the tyre for me (in his pristine white shirt and tie!) And sent me on my way - I was so flustered I never really felt I thanked him enough, but he was a complete star.

I like doing RAOK to pay it back too.

maybells Mon 12-Sep-11 15:05:52

i was 8 years old and was out riding with my dads friend i had only owned my pony for about 2 weeks and really didn't have a clue a very novice rider.
we were going along this sandy canter track which lead from the main road all the way through the woods.
my df left me at the back of the line and my pony for no reason decided to take off in the opposite direction full speed gallop. my df didn't even notice id gone. i can remember screaming in terror with tears streaming down my face we were heading straight for the main road and i couldn't stop. then out of nowhere two men riding western in their cowboy hats galloped out of the surrounding trees and grabbed my pony brining her to a stop!
they were my knights in shining armour and if it hadn't been for them i dont know what would have happened. thanks guys thats was 16 years ago and i still remember how glad i was to see you bursting out from the trees to my rescue!

LillyTheMinx Thu 15-Sep-11 20:53:13

i started a new thread about this as i didn`t realise this was here. Reading through all these is really making me cry. Very emotional.

When I was fairly newly pregnant with DS and before I'd found out I suddenly felt very unwell and hot in a shop in the city centre. I went outside, took my coat off and sat on a bench. It was a freezing January day but I felt like I was burning up.

A newspaper vendor from across the road came running over after a few minutes and sat next to me. He asked me if I was ok and told me I should really put my coat back on or I'd freeze. I told him how awful I felt and he went running back over to his stand and came back with one of the bottles of posh water - his words - that they were giving away as a free gift with the paper that day and sat chatting with me about his DD and GCs until I felt well enough to go and get on the bus. I have never forgotten how kind and concerned he was. And I found out shortly afterwards through my job at the time that nearly all of the newspaper vendors had problems with alcohol, drugs or homelessness and they were employed through a charity. I did go and look for him a few times, to thank him again, but never found him. I hope he is ok.

marcopront Sat 17-Sep-11 06:23:24

I was traveling back from the US to Mexico. I had enough pesos to pay for a bus in Mexico but was 1 dollar short to pay for a bus over the border. I asked someone if he could give me a dollar he did.

When traveling round a safari park back in Kenya we got a flat tire. My partner got out to change it, and a group of South African man stopped to help. Every other private vehicle stopped to ask if we were alright. Every tour group just drove past, in some case looking annoyed that we were stopped in the middle of the road.

LaLaLaLayla Sat 17-Sep-11 06:42:16

What a great thread! Here's mine...

I was a young, single, pregnant 21 year old. I had just been turned away from the Benefits Office and I was homeless and hungry. An elderly lady took me to the cafe in Habitat and bought me some mushroom soup and a roll, then gave me 50 quid. I used the 50 quid to put a deposit on a rental flat and from then on, my life just got better and better.

I never got the chance to repay the 50 quid but I have never forgotten her. I can't eat mushroom soup without remembering her!

She is probably dead by now, but I would love the chance to repay the money, maybe to her family. Her name was Sybil Crabbe and she lived in Bristol. Does anybody here know of her or the family?

I clicked on this thread and thought I must have started it when drunk or something!

CrushWithEyeliner, if you are still around, sorry for stepping on your toes.

Will change into a previous incarnation forthwith.

CrushedWithEyeliner x

golemmings Mon 24-Oct-11 00:27:34

Loving this and therefore resurrecting it.

When DS was born, the labour was difficult and he needed to be resuscitated.

He was born just before shift change so once he was stable, the midwife who had supervised his delivery left us in someone else's care and went to do the paperwork before leaving for the night.

Once our admin was done, she came back to see how we were doing and then went off to do her time sheet. She then returned again by which time DS was beginning to deteriorate. She promised to phone to see how he was once she got home. Half an hour later the mw who was treating us was called out of the room to take a phone call...

Not only that but she came to visit me daily for the remainder of our stay whilst DS was in neonatal. Her visits were brief, without pity but full of compassion. Her visits were even more valuable given that apart from DH and a visit from my dad (who isn't local) we had no other visitors.

Just the memory of this lovely woman coming in and sitting on my bed for 5 mins a day makes me well up in gratitude.

Onemorning Sat 05-Nov-11 21:39:19

I've just found this thread. It's lovely!

My friend's father was dying in a hospice. The first time she went to see him, they'd taken him into the garden in his bed so he could enjoy the sunshine and flowers. When he was dying, a nurse called my friend and said 'You should come soon.' She was just getting ready to go, and she got a call back. 'He's just passed. He wasn't on his own, someone was holding his hand.'

My mum lives abroad and was mugged recently. She doesn't earn much and the bastard took every penny she had. The day after she found an envelope full of cash in her letter box. All of her friends deny knowledge of where the money comes from.

My brother broke his neck and had to have a tube put down his neck before his operation while conscious. A lovely trainee nurse held his hand through the procedure.

When I was a teen my lovely uncle went walkabout for a week. He'd had a breakdown, and left the house with a few coins and the clothes he was wearing. Travellers made sure that he was sheltered, fed and clothed for a few days. He'd got very far from where he lived, and when he 'came to' a friend of the family paid for him to have a flight home, and got him to the airport.

lisad123 Sat 05-Nov-11 22:11:12

I have some:

I was at chemist, dd2 was 3 weeks old and had been in so much pain from gallstones (didn't know that's what it was) I started being sick outside chemist. 2 little old ladies walked me home, and stayed with me till my mum arrived smile

Another was the night we received a call to say dh blood results were "off" and he had to go to local hospital. It was 4am and I was shattered, dd2 was 18 months and still waking and I knew as soon as I got home she would want a feed. The nurse there saw me leave dh room and start crying and she just stood there, hugged me and waited for me to calm down and then walked me to the car.

balletpump Sat 05-Nov-11 23:37:21

Everything that mumsnet posters have done since DS dog went missing! The kindness of strangers should never be underestimated

SouthGoingZax Sat 05-Nov-11 23:47:59

My best friend was in Sydney on a gap year and I was visiting. The place she was living was about 10 miles out of town. We had mis-budgeted in the bar (!) and had no money to get a bus home, so were wandering the streets of Sydney at 3am.

A huge guy with shades and designer stubble approached us and asked if we wanted to buy drugs. We said that we didn't even have enough for the bus fare home and showed him our empty wallets.

He gave us 10 dollars for the bus fare home, walked us to the busstop and said "stay safe, ladies".

recall Sat 05-Nov-11 23:56:42

I was 22 weeks pregnant and started miscarrying. I was moved into a side ward and realised there was no TV. I was dreading a whole night of silent worrying. A care assistant who had just finished her shift, searched the whole hospital to find me a TV and was an hour late home. Will never forget that.

Kandinsky Mon 07-Nov-11 16:14:56

Believe in the power of random acts of kindness. Many years ago I was coming home from work on the train when there was a catastrophic overhead power line pull down and a 45 min journey took 7 hours and ended 30 miles from my destination. In my carriage was an elderly man getting increasingly worried about it. I told him to stick with me and and when we finally arrived at a station I was able to call my brother in law to collect me and take me and my new friend back to our respective houses.
Fast forward to the terrible snow of last year when my son and his girlfriend were trying to get home for Christmas laden with laptops, revision and presents and all but a handful of trains were cancelled. As they set out for an hours walk to the station as there were no taxis or buses in operation a young man in a car stopped and took them right to the station entrance and refused to take any payment.

In the supermarket an elderly lady in front of me at the checkout had a dizzy turn and clearly her frail husband could not cope with her and their shopping. After a sit down and a glass of water she rallied a bit and I offered to drive them home. As it turned out they were not even far out of my way. This small act has been repaid multiple times over by so many kind people who helped my Mum in her earlier stages of dementia when she went out and forgot how to get home and later when she went AWOL from her care home and turned up in random places miles away from home.

When I went for my first scan (first baby), very exciting, had drank lots of water - all ready to go in. They couldn't see the baby properly and told me to go back and drink another jug of water. I was panicking at this point (not believing I was pregnant anyway until I saw evidence) just wanted to see my baby! So I drank the jug of water and waited...and waited. By this point I was so desperate for a wee I was actually about to wet myself, I could feel myself filling up. I ran to the toilet and did the biggest wee ever. I came back to the sonography room, and was looking for a Sonographer to tell, but instead the little old lady who was a volunteer asked me if I was okay, I burst into tears and told her "I had to go for a wee" blush she told me that it was fine, got me another jug of water and made sure that I was next in the queue and didn't have to wait any longer.

DD eventually showed up on the scan and is now 15months. smile

Such a lovely thread.

Georgimama Thu 10-Nov-11 11:41:34

This is very very random. When I was about 13 I was in the Scouts and we started talking on CB radio (I think it was CB, possibly not). Anyway over a period of weeks and months we started talking to what we believed was a group of Scouts in Czechoslovakia. Our Scout leader was a lovely man but random to say the least and in the course of these conversations it was decided we would go over there on our summer camp and meet up with these Scouts. We loaded up the minibus and drove to Czechoslovakia. In case anyone is wondering that takes a long time.

When we got to what we thought was the rendez vous - nothing. No campsite, no Scouts. We spent a night in a layby and drove into Prague (about an hour fortunately so not far) where we contacted the British Consulate for advice and also to get in touch with parents at home to discuss what we should do and, I suppose, get some money wired. Whilst in Prague our random Scout leader ended up chatting to some young bloke who was gorgeous I might inconsequentially add who was a doctor and, hey presto, an actual Scout leader. His troop were going on camp two days later and they invited us to join them. So we spent the next two nights in a youth hostel we found and then joined this completely random set of Scouts in their camp. They shared their food, drink, tents, everything with us.

We never knew whether the other Scouts were just a massive wind up, whether there had been a miscommunication, whatever. But the bunch we ended up with were the nicest people in the world and the following year me, my mum and one other girl went to stay with gorgeous young doctor's parents in their flat in Prague, and afterwards the troop came back with us for a week's camp.

ScarlettIsWalking Thu 10-Nov-11 11:54:48

Beautiful, beautiful thread. So lovely it seems to be revived around this time of year.

FloydieDoydie Wed 16-Nov-11 17:23:27

I've reagents while thread and sobbed like a child at all the wonderful stories. smile

Mine are fairly small things, but nice nonetheless;

I at Download Festival in 2010, when managed to lose my purse with all my money and bank cards (a festival virgin who didn't separate my money!). I was distraught and luckily my friends lent me some cash for food. I was made up the next day when I found that my purse was handed in to lost property - complete with every penny of my £200+ and my bank cards! Thank you to whoever handed that in smile - just shows we metalheads aren't as scary as we look wink I repaid my friends plus bought us all beer.

(Bit different to my experience at Sonisphere Festival later that year. On my first night, despite being super cautious about separating my cash/cards and hiding spare in my bra, I put it all together when I went to sleep. Someone broke into my tent and stole the (same) purse from out of my bag from next to my sleeping face angry. Thankfully (?) I didn't know until I woke up the next day, but I was once again at a festival with no money. Again, my fab friends (different ones) lent me food money and bought me cider. The purse was handed in - but this time sadly stripped of cash. The card was there but i had already cancelled it. Luckily my travel insurance covered me and I got all my money back, less the excess fee. Again I repaid my friends - but I got rid of that damn purse as I'm sure it was cursed)

---

When I started high school, we has not long moved to a "rough" estate (not that rough in comparison to some, but the worst here). We were considered "posh" for some reason as we spoke a bit nicer, and as a result used to have things thrown through our windows etc. I didn't make any friends on the estate because of this and because I was incredibly shy at that age. One day on the bus home, I was sat in my usual area at the front downstairs when some older boys started picking on me; calling me names, throwing sweets and eventually culminating in squashing a tangerine in my hair sad. Some older "hard" girls had somehow heard about what was happening and come down the stairs, shouted at the boys to stop and told me that from now on, I was to come and sit upstairs at the back of the bus with them. I sat on the second back seat on the top deck til the say I left school - long after those older is had gone. I was still a shy mouse who had no friends on the estate, but no one questioned my right to sit up there grin

oiwheresthecoffee Sun 25-Dec-11 18:11:44

I know this is old ish now but i wanted to add a few...

Me and some friends hitchhiked across Europe for charity when we were at uni and some of the kindness from total strangers was amazing. There was the couple who loaded all 3 of us complete with huge backpacks into their tiny citiron already filled with their luggage and drove us for 2 hours and ended up taking us 50km out of their way so we could catch a midnight ferry and save a fortune.
There was also the well dressed business man who picked us up in france in the early hours after wed spent the night sleeping rough in a field because we couldnt get a life anywhere else. He stopped for 3 dirty rough looking hitchhikers in his brand new audi and even put the heating on because i was so cold i couldnt feel my feet.

They 2 lads when i was travelling in Bali and mis judged the prices and gave me and a friend their hotel room for the night and slept in a shared room with friends becuase we couldnt afford a room. This was the first time wed had running water and air con for 2 weeks ! We left all the money we had but it didnt feel like enough of a thank you !

Anyway , all you you thank you so so much , you restored my faith in people !

newmum953 Sun 25-Dec-11 18:24:20

After withdrawing a whole lot of money from my first paycheck for a proper job when I was 20, I accidentally dropped it while trying to pocket it. About 10 minutes later, a man and child approached me with the cash. They had seen me drop the money and had followed me down some busy city streets to catch up with me. They had not given up when they called me to turn around and I didn't hear due to the traffic noise. My heroes!

Toobluntforsleighbells Mon 26-Dec-11 11:44:23

Have really enjoyed reading this old thread and wanted to add a couple myself. Years ago whilst travelling alone in the States, had a really long walk from the underground station to the youth hostel in North Carolina, carrying 2 v heavy suitcases (without wheels) and therefore could only walk about 5 steps before stopping for a rest, when a guy appeared out of nowhere and carried them the entire rest of the way for me (about a mile). He simply dropped them off for me and walked back the way we came, not looking for anything in return.

Another was not long after I'd moved to England. On a night out with my new flatmate in Birmingham, we ended up having a row and I stormed off out of the nightclub (very drunk!). I didn't know where I was or where to go to get a taxi home and was staggering aimlessly when a young couple stopped and asked me what I was doing. When I told them what happened, they told me to go with them took me to the main area, hailed a taxi and gave me £20 for the taxi home! They said they were off duty police officers and had seen too many bad things happen to girls like me so wanted to be sure I got home safely. They also told the taxi driver who they were and to make sure I got home ok.

Will always be grateful to them for looking after a drunk lost girl.

trulyscrumptious43 Mon 26-Dec-11 19:46:22

I was 8 and a half months pg with DD. We are travellers and were on the road at the time.
I travelled with horses (they pulled my home). My main horse was also pg (10 and a half months, due at the same time as me).
I had had a hard time with XP who had left me and didn't want to know. So a few months previously I'd travelled (without my horses) to southern europe to stay with friends and had just returned to the UK after deciding that Spanish maternity 'care' was slightly rudimentary and not for me.

My horses had been in the care of a traveller friend while I was away but it was time to gather my possessions around me in time for myself and my mare to deliver.

I had found a field which I could just about afford to rent, which was near a traveller site, where some friends were, and hopefully we could stay in one place for long enough for me to have the baby.
This was about 25 miles away from the place where my mare was and it was spring. Having no money at all now that I had paid four weeks advance rent on the field, and having six legs between us, I decided we should just get out there and start walking.
Unfortunately since I was too round to get on and off the horse on my own, and she was a bit round too, I knew that we wouldn't make it in a day. But there was no other option available, and I decided that something would turn up.

We happily strolled and munched the verges for around 13 miles in faint sunshine and light drizzle, looking possibly a bit Nativity, if Mary's donkey had been a nice bay mare too many hands high for her to get onto... and then the daylight started to fade.
We came into in a little Cotswold village. I stopped everyone I saw and asked if they knew any of the owners of the fields around us. Eventually someone pointed me in the direction of the vicarage, because they told me that vicar's wife ran a Riding for The Disabled scheme.
I walked up to the lovely old stone building across a gravel drive with a horse in my hand. I knocked on the door and a lovely lady answered. I explained that I was travelling with my horse and asked if I could pop her into the field with her horses for the night, I would be back first thing in the morning to pick her up and continue my journey.

The vicar's wife was delighted to help, and we'd let my mare loose in her field with the other horses within minutes. The horse kicked up her heels and ran around in excitement. I asked the lady if I could use her phone as my friend who had a car had arranged to be in the pub in the place I was headed for - this was in the days before mobile phones! The lady said of course, and would you like some food too? Before I knew it I was wolfing down a huge plate of veggie lasagne straight out of her Aga.

As my friend with the car arrived to pick me up for the night, the vicar's wife asked me as a kind of afterthought, why was I walking with the horse and not transporting her in a horsebox? Was she difficult to box? I told her that I didn't have any money to rent a horsebox, and she asked very politely if I would possibly accept the use of her horsebox the next morning?

Reader, I could have wept. I hichhiked back there the next morning (friend with car had other business to attend to) and we popped that pregnant mare in the horsebox and drove her the remaining 12 miles to her new field. This was really brilliant as the final 3 miles would have meant walking through a town centre and then up a massive hill. Feisty and independent though I was, I'm no fool and my motto is always never look a gift horsebox in the mouth.

Within 10 days both myself and my mare had been delivered of two females of the species.

I will never forget that vicar's wife. My DD is now at university and I think I should go back to the vicarage to see if I can leave a message of thanks.

imaginethat Mon 02-Jan-12 01:52:13

In LA I stopped to ask a homeless guy for directions and he gave me $5! I was so startled I just said, "thank you".

When I was working in central London and used to leave my newspaper at the coffee shop each day. There would always be a guy sitting there, he looked homeless. Every day I used to think, "One day I'll give him some money/do something for him.". Then he approached me and gave me two quid saying he always read the newspaper I left and it was time he gave me some money.!

At a coffee shop I got to the counter to find I'd left my purse behind and the guy next in line said, "I'll get it for you" - wow, so kind.

When my baby son was well enough to be discharged from hospital, the staff offered to bring him home so I didn't have to drive into the city again as they knew how exhausted I was. Amazing.

Selks Mon 02-Jan-12 02:10:40

Yes, one act of kindness really sticks in my mind.

About fifteen years ago I applied for a job. I had just left a job where I had not got on with the manager (none of the staff did).

I went for the interview for the new job which went very well...afterwards the lady interviewer (my new potential manager) took me to one side and said that she wanted to offer me the job but I would need to get a different reference as my previous manager had not given a good one (barstard). I got the different reference and got the job.

I owe that woman my entire career. She gave me a massive break and I did well in my work, progressing well along the career ladder. She could easily have not offered me the job at all due to the poor reference.

I was sorry to hear a couple of years ago that she had passed away from cancer.

Thank you ** I will always remember the opportunity that you gave me.

lollopybear Mon 02-Jan-12 09:22:29

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

WyrdMother Fri 07-Sep-12 16:34:20

<Injects thread with secret serum and brings back to life>.

Today a young member of a well know supermarket's staff was walking into the store as I was trying to leave and saw that I was completely incapable of carrying all my bags, he walked half of them to the bus stop around the corner despite my protestations and despite the fact that I am neither a hot babe nor obviously old and frail. Frankly I would have been buggered without his help.

I must buy a shopping trolley.

QueenStromba Tue 18-Sep-12 00:05:31

I've had a few. One night when I was about 18 I was going out to a club. After waiting ages for what was probably the last bus I realised that I didn't have any change on me for the fare (this was in Dublin where you can only pay with coins because they go in a coin collector thingy and you get a receipt for any over payment). The bus driver saw that I was upset about not having money for the fare so he let me on for free. I was the only person on the bus so I sat up the front chatting to him. He asked me where I was going and I said I was going to the Temple Theatre. Since I was the only person on the bus he decided to take a detour and drop me off right outside the club. Absolute legend!

Another one was quite recently. I have anxiety issues and for a long time I couldn't even get on the tube. I've been better recently after some CBT but really I need a seat or I start panicking. I got on the tube and there weren't any seats so I decided the best thing to do would be to go to the end of the carriage and sit down against the door between carriages. I did that and immediately a guy got up and gave me his seat even though he wasn't getting off for another few stops. I really wanted to explain to him just how much it meant to me but I was worried it would make him uncomfortable if I talked to him about my mental health issues. If anyone knows the man in vibram five fingers who gave me his seat and got off at Fulham Broadway about two months ago, please do tell him how much I appreciate his kindness.

sleepdodger Tue 18-Sep-12 00:13:28

Yes
Dh and I just got first place together (pre marriage) all doe eyed and misty... And forgot we had no furniture hmm
Next door Neighbour appeared with 2 garden chairs for us smile
So kind
Weirdly I then worked with him, and now he's v poorly so hoping the kindness will bring him good get well karma sad

RuckAndRoll Tue 18-Sep-12 13:38:50

A few years back I was taken into A&E and admitted to hospital, really not very well. The Dr ordered all sorts of tests and I was none the wiser what was wrong. I was due to go for exploratory surgery about 5pm so DH was told not to bother coming in for evening visiting. There was a delay in surgery so I hadn't gone down by visiting, every other person on the ward had visitors, happy and laughing. I was curled up crying and feeling very sorry for myself when this nurse appeared, very matronly 'now now what's all this silly crying about' type person, gave me a huge hug and sat with me for half an hour until I had calmed down.

Incidently didn't get taken down to theatre until 11.30pm in the end!

Despite working in the hospital and being aware of the no flowers rule, DH sent a huge bunch of flowers for me. Ended up giving them to this lovely nurse to take home.

modifiedmum Sat 22-Sep-12 20:12:21

Few years back christmas shopping in a shopping centre i felt very hot suddenly and felt like i was going to faint and i just collapsed by the side of some steps, i was all dizzy, clammy, just awful. Felt like I was really ill. Most people ignored me or just stared at me like i chose to sit collapsed but one woman stopped me, called for help and got me a wheelchair from upstairs, WHEELED me up to the food court bought me a jacket potato and refused to take any money for it, sat with me to while we ate together and wished me well. smile

Campari Wed 24-Oct-12 14:10:56

I'll never forget the kindness that was shown to me one year when I nearly spent a very miserable christmas alone.

I was a student working abroad on my year off, and was looking forward to flying home to see my family at xmas (had never been away from them before), but unfortunately due to problems with my boss having to go back to the UK and leave me in charge, I was left in the apartment, all on my own, to face a lonely christmas with not a single soul for company. I phoned my family in tears on xmas eve, absolutely devastated to have to tell my mum I wouldn't be coming home, I had to stay. She also got teary which made me feel even worse sad

So I basically went to the shop, loaded up on snacks and wine, and spent xmas eve watching foreign telly, while crying into my drink. I felt so lonely and so sad that I wasn't with all my family having the nice xmas that I was so looking forward to. I just wanted to get myself drunk and hopefully sleep through it.

Until....I had a knock on the door, about 11pm, it was the housemaid who cleaned the apartment...I'll never forget it, she said "Hello I was going past the road and I saw the lights on, I couldnt help it, I wanted to check you were not alone, I thought you would be going home?"
Anyway I told her my sob story (through tears), and she said to me "this is not right for a young girl to spend xmas alone!! You must come with me, I hope you like chicken and beef because we are having a BBQ at my house, quickly put your shoes on, Im taking you to spend xmas with my family, they will welcome you with open arms.."

Well of course I pathetically blubbed even more at her generosity, and I had the most amazing xmas eve ever, it was the best...there was a huge BBQ, lots of her friends and family who welcomed me like theyd known me for years, and we laughed and talked all night...Also, we all spent xmas day together too!! I helped cook the lunch, entertain the kids etc..I ended up having a wonderful day, and not once did I feel out of place, they truly welcomed me like one of the family. I will never forget that lovely lady or her family....because of her I had one of the best xmas' ever, when I so nearly could have spent it depressed and drunk.

Last year I was riding home on my motorbike and someone wasn't looking where they were going, pulled out of a side road and hit me. Whilst I was lying in the road, waiting for an ambulance one woman (from a rather large crowd of people who had rushed over to help) managed to interpret my garbling and call DP then sat with me for the twenty minutes it took to for the paramedics to arrive. She held my hand the whole time and encouraged me to talk and not to move (it was suspected that I had broken my spine) and just generally kept me calm. I wish I could find her and say thank you.

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