I’m not going to lie to you – this past six months has been super challenging for a person who likes to keep everything nice and tidy and under control. What with moving house, family demands, keeping my coaching business going and getting very exercised indeed about all that the Inspiring Speaking Programme was asking of me, I have been spinning my wheels and doing back flips and somersaults and generally getting myself in to a right state in my quest to keep my balls from falling.
Last week I had so much to think about and do that I actually noticed that every time I stressed about something a nasty little twitch started up in my right eye. I don’t think anyone noticed …
Anyway as the dust settles and the tide of extreme activity starts to recede, it occurs to me that even from the depths of my foggy world I was aware that my path was made so much easier by some notable beacons of light. These came in the form of several very helpful, very kind men in uniforms (and no, they were not – on this occasion – dispensing medication).
The distinguished roll call looks like this;
Gary – the heroic and infinitely patient house clearance man who spent ten long hours trudging up and down the millions of stairs in our old house removing our terrible ancient and dusty rubbish to take to the dump, or to the auction house or ebay – who every time I asked him to tackle yet another horrendous cupboard would simply smile benignly and say ‘No problem’ as though all I had asked him to do was tidy the cutlery drawer or arrange some flowers in a vase.
Robbie and his merry band of strong lads; the removal men from heaven. It was raining, there were no parking suspensions booked at either end, there was an immense amount of boxes to pack, label and transport from one house to another (and more precisely to equivalent rooms – mostly with astounding accuracy we later discovered). Did they moan? Did they complain? They did not. Well, there was a bit of swearing when it came to Micky’s plants but that was fully understandable and also Robbie looked mildly annoyed when just as they were about to leave, I announced that the bedside tables were on the wrong sides of the marital bed; but honestly, talk about cheerfulness in the face of adversity … In case you’re wondering Robbie swallowed his ire and picked those bedside mothers up and switched them in the blink of an eye.
The benign elderly guys from a well known department store who came when they said they would and installed the new washing machine and dryer without a murmur. Admittedly they failed to get the modular sofa downstairs but did so with such charm and constructive suggestions on how to resolve the problem that I felt I’d spent time in the company of a few kindly grandads who had some life lessons to impart.
The totally mellow and chilled telephone/internet man who scratched his head, said we had a problem, sighed quite a lot, scratched his head some more and then proceeded to install a fully functioning internet users’s paradise isle in half a day.
The sweet guy who delivered the headboard for our bed. Nothing specific there – just plain nice and helpful and jolly even at 8 o’clock in the morning.
The thoughtful, contemplative Italian electrician who has a solution for everything but always with an eye to good design. He works all hours and never says no.
Finally we are currently blessed with the uplifting presence of Dave the bedroom fitter – what a lovely man, here every day on the dot of eight, cheerfully moving enormous pieces of furniture about on his own so that by the end of next week we will finally have somewhere to put our stuff. Thank you Dave.
And if that’s not enough, to their further credit they have all given Cappucine and Peaches a friendly stroke and spoken softly to them so they wouldn’t be freaked – so, so sweet, so, so human.
I have experienced an awful lot of bad, mean spirited service in my time – as I am sure have you – but for some mysterious reason the universe has decreed our tiny corner of West London a bad service free zone.
These wonderful, soothing men seem to have picked up on my extreme distress and done what they could to ease my woes. Their sheer refusal to be daunted by the task ahead, their determined resolution to get the job done come what may, all with a smile on their faces and a comforting word to the wild eyed woman anxiously watching their every move, has reminded me of why the best sort of men are brilliant and strong and sensitive and unfazed and just plain manly.
Have you experienced some noble acts of kindness lately from a man or even a woman? How did it feel to be on the receiving end of someone else’s beneficence? Why not share it OUT LOUD with us.
Oh, and for the record, the twitch seems to have gone, thanking you kindly for asking.