Thursday, March 08, 2007

Paying It Forward

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Last week, I had a few interesting, random things happen that have showed the kindness of strangers - or, in one case, it was not kindness but a mishap on that person's part that cost him/her $30.

The snowballs started on February 22nd with what I wrote about in the post The kindness of strangers. This post was about how someone randomly contacted my Hubby after he had posted on his wrestling message board about Britney Spears and our experiences with infertility and pregnancy loss.

Well, on February 28th, my last day officially working from home, E and I wanted to get the boys together for a playdate in the afternoon. So, Chris and I headed over to her house around 4 pm and we walked over to the train station to watch the trains (see post Christopher Fridays: Train Spotting and Dolphin Jumping). The plan was to order pizza when we got back to her house after watching the trains for a while, by which time Hubby and J would be home from work and we could eat together. But, on the walk over to the trainstation, E asked me to wait a second - she found $10 on the ground. We looked around and absolutely no one was there - no one we could spot who would have dropped the money. About a block further, I stopped short and found $20 on the ground. We looked around again - yet again, no one close who could have dropped the cash. So, E decided that we should use the money for paying for dinner. There was no way we could find who lost it, so we might as well use it.

...So, we did use it for dinner and only paid for the tip.

However, I felt bad about it the entire time. What if the person who dropped it really needed the cash? What if they didn't have enough to make ends meet - and we used their cash on something frivilous that we could have afforded ourselves? What if the cash meant not being able to feed his/her child?

Of course, it could have been lost by someone who was just going to spend it on something as frivilous as our pizza for dinner. But, who could tell us that? No one was around to could have said the money was their's.

Then, last Friday, I stopped to get gas on my way in to work. The Shell station on the GSP is still the only station that still had Regular for $2.28 a gallon, so I was going to fill up the tank since my car was about to sound the idiot bell for being low on gas. When I asked the attendant to fill it up with Regular (nope, we don't pump our gas in NJ), he told me that they were out of Regular. I watched as several people left the gas station in a huff because the station was out of Regular and went next door to the Exxon station (although their price for regular was the same price at the Plus at the Shell station). So, I decided I might as well get the Plus - the cost for the Plus was still cheaper than the Regular at most of the area gas stations. When the attendant returned with my receipt, he had given me the Plus for the price of the Regular - and had walked away before I could thank him! I managed to save a few dollars on the tank of gas.

So, I decided that - since I had saved at least $40 on various things last week - that I needed to give that money back somewhere. So, I dontated more than the $40 saved to the March of Dimes this week for their Annual Prematurity Drive.

I hope the money I saved last week goes to some good use now....and maybe a few of us can donate to those babies who need it too.

4 comments:

Adrienne said...

If I can be frivolous for a second and focus on the fact that your gas is 70 cents a gallon cheaper than here in Calfornia, and that your cheaper gasoline is for FULL SERVE! I need to move back home to Philly...sigh.

Not many people would think of found money the way you did. The next time I get something for nothing, I'll be sure to pass it along to someone who needs it. Thanks for the inspiration.

The Town Criers said...

This was inspiring. I love how thoughtful you are. And yay for giving to March of Dimes. I'm just signing up for their Walk for America walkathon in May.

Amy said...

Wow. What a wonderful thing you did by donating to the March of dimes. You go girl!

Piccinigirl said...

wow, what an amazing thing to do. That is awesome...:)