Sunday, 23 December 2007

Day 345 - a christmas carol

I met with two friends of mine for lunch today - a christmas tradition that goes way back.

One of them, a successful fashion buyer, told me a story that warmed my heart. Her story touched me because she told it authentically.

On a heady night out recently, Mandy had been attending one of several parties and jumped into a cab a bit worse for wear.

She awoke later that morning and noticed that her watch, a diamond encrusted Cartier, was missing.

In a hungover panic, all the worst thoughts crossed her head. Had the maid stolen it? Had the cab driver realized she was drunk and slipped it off her wrist? Had one of her 'friends' taken advantage of her?

Anyway, she reported the unsolved crime to the police and put in the insurance claim.

Thing is about Mandy is she is one of the finest people I know. Privileged, but immensely grateful. Troubled, but not self obsessed. Beautiful and stylish but kind and intelligent. Above all, I believe she consistently puts others before herself.

Around 4 weeks later, Mandy received a call from the police.

Believe it or not someone had handed her watch in, having found it on the street. On picking it up, Mandy realised that the clasp was loose and it must have slipped off her wrist.

The watch is worth a hell of a lot.

And I don't know if it's sad indictment on my own take on human integrity, or a reflection of how bad things have gotten in society, but the fact that someone handed it back in having picked it from the street, renews my belief in the human spirit.

Either way I loved hearing this story at Christmas.

I think it was Lao Tzu who said that anyone can observe the Tao while solitary in the himalayas, but keeping such behavior in the midst of a hectic city is true strength.

The lady who returned the watch was called Charity, and Mandy sent her one of London's largest floral dispatches in recent years.

Beyond this, I really got that problems like ours really pale in comparison to the rest of the world's. But I got that everyone's issues are relative. And that if we can only ignite the human spirit to the extent that Charity showed, the world would be a much, much better place. I know that each and every one us has the ability to do this - for me, it is time to use it.

That is what my life is about.

I wish you all my love, and many, many happy wishes for the holiday season.

Ben x



La Belette Rouge said...

Nice Christmas miracle, thank you, TAYO for sharing it. Your post makes me think of a quote by Albert Einstein, "There are two ways to live: you can live as if nothing is a miracle; you can live as if everything is a miracle.”

TAYO,I hope your holidays are filled with the spirit of the miraculous.

EMG said...

Hello, thanks for sharing the story with everyone. I just took a look at a comment that you left a few days ago on the first post I made. Thank you so much for your thoughts and I'm glad you enjoyed it. I've been sitting here reading some of your posts and have truly enjoyed them.
I also believe in there were more people like Charity in this world, the world would be that "better place" we are sometimes looking for, but never seem to fully find.
Taking a year out to make this world a better place...that's not only very impressive, but inspirational as well.
Have a great holiday :)

Anonymous said...

Thank you for writing your thoughts and stories. All of them are a pleasure to read. Have a wonderful holiday!

b said...

These stories are so important to spread. It was so wonderful that Mandy knew who found the watch and was able to thank that woman herself. But often, we do kind things but do not see the effect. So, to hear this story is wonderful and important. Kindness and generosity spread far beyond what we often imagine.

Having you back here blogging is a tremendous Christmas gift. Thank you, Ben. Merry Christmas. Looking forward to sharing each other's journey further in the year to come.

Take A Year Out said...

LBR - i'd forgotten that one, thank you. things feel pretty miraculous at the moment so i wish the same for you and yours.

emg - thank you for that, believe me taking a year out is so powerful. and we can all do it... if we did this word would be so relaxed, so free and so much the better for it. please consider it!

Colleen and B thank your for your comments, it is just great to receive such support. More than anything, it makes me think this blog has the legs to really make stuff happen. And that feels wonderful. i've been tentatively putting it out here and there as i 'tweak it' and 'get it right'. but you guys have inspired me to start putting real energy into it, so thank you.

Have a great christmas all of you - notice the magic happening all around you x