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A Kindness

How would I make it through a single day without the kindness shown to me by my husband, neighbors, and strangers? Despite the myth of independence, I recognize more and more how intricately my well being depends on other human beings and their good will.


I have a small story from ordinary life. Recently, I drove from Oberlin to Evanston, my car loaded with boxes, to begin the move into my new Evanston apartment. It was a hot day, and after the drive, I became exhausted after making only about ten trips from the curb up steps to an inner courtyard and then up three flights of stairs. I decided to rest and wait for the cool weather of evening and the breeze from the lake. Then, at 6:30 pm, my landlord and landlady showed up. Their first names begin with A and B, and they are refugees from Bosnia, near Sarajevo. My little apartment was the first place they were able to buy, a tiny one-bedroom where they lived with their two children, until they could afford a bigger place. They greeted me so warmly and saw I was tired. They then insisted carrying the rest of my boxes and two very heavy Tibetan rugs up the stairs: dishes, computer equipment, everything. A and B declined my offer to buy them supper and left for home. Their generosity and genuine warmth made me feel so welcome and cared for in my new place! DS

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