I wanted to share one of the nicest things that someone has done for me since I had my accident, because it still makes me smile when I think about it. It is one of those things that restores my faith in the human race. Genuine good people.
My friend once left her phone on a train. Some woman found it, rang my friend’s mum to get her address and posted the phone back anonymously. She didn’t want any thanks or acknowledgement, she just wanted to return the phone to its rightful owner. Completely selfless; she could have just pretended to not see the phone, or she could have stolen it, but she didn’t.
Anyway, what happened to me was more kind in my opinion! I moved into a new flat in April this year. It is an apartment block with 12 apartments, each with their own parking space and then there are about 10 visitor spaces around the corner, and a bit of road parking not far away. The allocated spaces are pretty close together ie not enough space to get a wheelchair there for me to hop in and out of the car.
So I started parking in a ‘disabled’ space around the corner. It had a sign saying ‘Disabled Parking Only’ but doesn’t actually have any spaces marked out. For about a week I was parking here and it wasn’t a problem. Then I discovered that a van kept parking next to me and it meant I didn’t have enough space for the wheelchair. So I started parking in a slightly different way so that he couldn’t squeeze his big old white van in there as well (By the way, he didn’t have a Blue Badge, and he was in no way disabled.) He had seen me on many occasions loading myself in and out of the car, and I always displayed my Blue Badge on the dashboard, so he knew I needed the space.
One day I got to my car to find a note on my windscreen from his WIFE! It wasn’t even from him! And it was a pretty rude note telling me that actually the place where I was parking wasn’t really a designated disabled place, the sign had been left there from when there was a doctor’s surgery nearby, and that if I just parked a little bit further over then there would be space for the both of us. They also don’t even live in my road, there just isn’t much space in their road for parking either. The cheek of it!
But then my neighbour did the most amazing thing. (She had no idea about my nightmare parking situation, or the rude note on my windscreen) She knocked on my door one evening and told me that she’d asked the person at Number 16 who didn’t have a car whether she could park her car in his spot, so that I could have her parking space which is next to my allocated space. I was speechless… I had met this woman once before, and now she had gone out of her way to solve a problem for me that I had been stressing about every time I had to use the car. She didn’t make a big deal out of it, hadn’t asked me about it before sorting it with Number 16, and just brushed it off when I told her how amazingly grateful I was. It was a 100% selfless act from a virtual stranger.
I can’t really describe how touched I was by this gesture. It probably seems so minor to everyone else, but to me it has made the world of difference. I can now park right outside the apartment building, and never need to worry about whether I will have enough space to get in and out of the car.
Now I just have to hope that the person at Number 16 doesn’t move out, and someone who has a car moves in. I can feel my stress levels rising just thinking about it…