As a law enforcement officer, I was constantly aware of my surroundings.  Hidden dangers could mean life or death.  A year after retirement, I’m still alert.  But it’s not danger I’m spotting.  It’s small acts of kindness.

Thank you for your service!

My husband and I were shopping at Cosco when an older man stopped us.  He asked about the Durango, Colorado shirt my husband wore.  As the two of them spoke about Durango, I took a trip to the lady’s room.  When I came back there was a woman standing quietly beside the older man.  I thought she was his daughter and she was waiting patiently for the conversation to end.  She was around our age.

dandelion small acts of kindnessThe man and my husband shook hands and we turned to walk away. The woman who was waiting said to the older man, “Sir, I would like to thank you for your service.”

Until she spoke, I hadn’t noticed that the man’s hat said Vietnam Vet.

My husband and I continued our shopping.  As we were checking out, we saw the woman and the Vietnam Vet eating together in the small food service area. I take my hat off to this woman. I know she made that man’s day. She also made mine.

The people we take for granted.

Every Tuesday morning we haul our large garbage bins to the curb in front of our house. The trash is picked up at around 11am.

I love our front deck and it’s a great place to read a bit and catch the morning sun. It’s high above the street which offers a bit of privacy. I was lost in my book when I noticed the loud rumble of the garbage collection truck turning up our road.

The young boy who lives next door, about five or six years old, ran to the road to watch the truck approach.  He was jumping up and down and waiving at the driver.  I couldn’t hear what he was saying, due to the noise, but the boy had something in his hand.

The driver stopped his truck, turned off the engine and jumped down to see what the boy had.

Here is the conversation…

“My dad is teaching me to whittle and this is what I’m making.” said the boy.

“That looks mighty fine. Remember to be careful with knives and be sure to show it to me when you’re finished.”

“My dad is teaching me to be careful too.”

“He sounds like a great dad. You be a good boy, now.”

The driver went back to his truck, started the engine, and resumed picking up the garbage.

These small acts of kindness make me smile.

My goal in 2016 is to pass these small acts of kindness on and hope that someone somewhere smiles over something I do.

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A version of this post was published on Dec. 31, 2015 at BAD LUCK DETECTIVE by Suzie Ivy.  Republished here with permission of the author.

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