Spreading smiles

Recently, Neerad’s post of Spreading Smiles in Rajkot, brought back memories of a guy (we used to call him kaka) who used to sit near my home’s corner in Jaipur with earthen pots of water covered with wet jute to keep them cold. He would offer water to passers-by whoever wanted some to escape the scorching Rajasthan heat. This was more than 20 years ago. I remember asking him why do you do this? And he simply said “because I know you need water right now and I want to be here when you walk back from school to give you water.”

It led me to question if we really need an organisation to volunteer? What is volunteering if not just to be of service to fellow travellers in this journey of life? Many a times we set out to do random acts of kindness but Neerad’s post introduced me to Bhadra ben who has been living a life of kindness and service not for one day but for every moment.

Sharing Neerad’s post here (Find the original at Moved by Love blog):

Last week a group of friends got together to spread love to the people of Rajkot. The day was one of the hottest with temperatures touching 45+ degrees Celsius. We carried jugs of cold water, chocolates, biscuits, hair oil, combs, nail cutter and some tea. As soon as we started offering them with love we could see the smile on people’s faces, engaging conversations and the place lit up on its own as more and more people started gathering around us to witness what was happening.
acts of kindness, volunteering as a way of life, what is volunteering, bhadra ben rajkot One conversation was very special. We met a balloon seller named Bhadra ben, who normally earned about Rs. 100 – Rs. 150 a day. From that money she saves and feeds, cows, dogs, buffaloes and even gets grains for pigeons. This was vouched by her best friend a millionaire who stayed exactly opposite to the Race course where Bhadra ben sold her balloons. Every single day this friend would come down from her house and spend an hour with Bhadra ben. They have been meeting each other for more than 8 years now :). She said, Bhadra ben is my best friend and the most honest person I’ve met in this planet. One more very touching incident was when we offered cold water to an old man walking down the road. He gladly accepted and smiled at us. After drinking the water and with teary eyes he said ‘After so many years of solitude, i am experiencing Kautimbik anand (Joy of a loving community)’. Those words really summed up the whole evening for us.                                                                                                                                 -Neerad Trivedi

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