Vincent drives a classic black cab around London – one of those old ones where the back doors open in the opposite direction from the front doors. After I hailed him from outside my flat, he asked me what had brought me to London as we headed for the Marylebone Farmers’ Market. I hesitated then told him about being ill for seven years and about getting CFS treatment in England. Vincent responded with his own honesty. He was supposed to be retired but had lost his pension to the UK equivalent of Bernie Madoff. When I paid the fare, Vincent gave me his mobile number so he could take me back home when I was ready. He refused to charge me for the return trip…
I don’t even remember the name of the vendor at the Farmers’ Market whose sage advice about dealing with life’s difficulties brought me to tears. This was right after I’d watched her practically give a pie away to a young mother who seemed like she was struggling to pay, while somehow making it look like the mother was doing her a favor.
The night before my plane took off for London, I finally accepted that I could not physically pull off all the packing and organizing. I desperately posted a request on TaskRabbit.com. A motherly woman in an SUV showed up at my San Francisco apartment early the next morning, packed my bags, and drove a bunch of my stuff to a storage unit.
In case you haven’t figured it out yet, I’m trying to say that the love of friends, relatives and even strangers inspires me, startles me and keeps me going. I could have said that at the beginning but it would have seemed too corny.
I hate to admit this but it’s easier to write stories about strangers – especially in a short post – than about the friends and relatives whose love has left me speechlessly grateful (you know who you are). I will get to that though. It would just take a lot more than a single blog post…
Day 22 (April 22) – Day to Day
- Write about something ordinary that’s inspiring to you, something simple, perhaps overlooked, that fuels your activism. OR
- Write about the things you couldn’t live without – list 10 things you need or love most.