Bundled up against the cold, heavy coat and scarf, gloves and my usual winter woolly hat - I stood patiently in line for my morning cup of latte, looking forward to enjoying the hot beverage on the train into London.
'Excuse me, Madam.' I heard a quiet voice in my ear. 'I hope you don't mind me saying so, but your hat is on inside out!'
Dressing in the midwinter gloom, I hadn't realised that my dark brown woollen cap was, indeed, inside out. But the gentleman standing behind me in the queue had noticed the rather obvious big, flapping white label on the top of my head.
Now, you might think this would make me awfully embarrasased. Well, at the time, I was just really grateful to this kind stranger who had taken time to mention the fact to me. You see, it saved me from travelling on the train and on the London Tube, and then walking a distance to the office looking rather silly with my inside-out hat on. I thanked him, the train came and I've never seen him since.
Which got me to thinking - it's little random acts of kindness which make the world a nicer place. There's been a lot of thinking around Random Acts of Kindness recently, but how about 'random acts/expressions of thankfulness' for those little kindnesses ?
It's taken a while but I've now started a bit of campaign to get more people to say 'thank you' - not just to people (family, friends, colleagues, even total strangers) but also to the world / God/ the universe for the good things that come our way, for little kindnesses received.
I just feel many of us go around sometimes having a bit of moan about life when really, there is so much, and so many people, to be thankful for. If you think it all sounds a bit sentimental - well, what's wrong with that? There was a time when common courtesy was to say 'thanks' routinely, write thank you letters for gifts received, and be just a little bit more appreciative of life in general.
I don't know whether it's because we all live in a more cynical world or because many of us are just too busy chasing our tails, our jobs, our success, our need to improve our lot, and worrying about the state of our finances, the world economy and our place in it all, that we sometimes forget the little pleasures in life. It's a cliche, I know, but do we really take time to 'smell the roses', or in my case, the early morning coffee?
I've started quite simply, on Facebook - the page is called 'Don't forget to .... Say Thanks!' - and I'm hoping that lots of people will log on, 'like' the page and then recommend to others. But more importantly, use the 'Don't Forget to .... Say Thanks!' page to post their own thankful messages!
So - let's give it go and see how far this thanks thing can travel.