Strawberry sensation..

8 Jun

Once upon a time there was a little old man, say in his early 70’s who we would refer to as “Bon Dia”. Every chilly winter morning, Bon Dia with his grey scraggly hair, gappy grin and long worn trench coat would stand in front of the shipyard in the car park and direct drivers into vacant spots. Of course, in return, a generous tip of a single euro or two was given (or expected); if he was lucky. As our yacht crew would walk past each day, he would kindly look up and announce “Bon Dia”, a Mallorqui phrase that translates to “Good Day”. Hands in pockets, he would then continue to wait; his facial expression always portrayed one of hope. Without this income, Bon Dia had nothing.

Alex soon discovered his “home”; in the glass entrance of a nearby building. A short mat was rolled out to the width of just over a metre and his small body when curled up, fit snug into this space. Something about Bon Dia from the very first time she saw him touched Alex’s heart deeply, and for that matter, the sight of all homeless folk.

One day, whilst out grocery shopping for crew food, she got to thinking about Bon Dia and what he ate on a daily basis, if anything.. or maybe he ate a lot. Who knew. Language barriers halted any form of communication, so she decided to buy him a little something, a gift… She considered a product of sustenance, nutrition, or longevity, but that could come in time. This first gift would be one of indulgence; a flavour sensation. An explosive taste… and with that, a punnet of beautifully ripe strawberries was purchased with Bon Dia’s name all over it!

That very night, Mike and Alex walked down to his home, strawberries in hand. He was sleeping in his space, so she tapped his shoulder lightly and in her basic spanish smiling, said “para tu” (for you). With that he sat upright, his eyes widened, he thanked her continuously and immediately tore open the packet gobbling down a few of the juicy red delights. Alex and Mike walked away smiling, and looked forward to the next gift that they could offer the kind faced man only known as Bon Dia.

The End.
Or, the beginning?

Now I don’t know Bon Dia well nor pretend to. I have no idea of his story, his real name, his passions, his aspirations, where he his life has taken him, whether he is happy and ultimately, why he lives on the street in Mallorca. Maybe he chooses to? Again, who knows. But what I recognise is that to feel pity or judge him based on his apparent situation would be to make assumptions. However, I do feel compassion when I see another human being sleeping on a mat, unwashed and alone. I know that a punnet of strawberries will not solve the world’s homeless issues, nor am I naïve enough to think that it will drastically change Bon Dia’s individual situation. I did not perform this act for external recognition or to be a “hero”, but rather because no act of kindness no matter how small is ever wasted (Aesop, The Lion and the Mouse). If you could perform one selfless act every single day, imagine the quality of your life? The increased level of fulfilment? Give it a go, I know I sure am going to. Donate your unwanted items, volunteer with a local non-profit organisation, do something nice, be courteous or simply lend an ear to someone in need.

So often we lose sight of the bigger picture, the world outside of ourselves. We get caught up in the day-to-day but to do something nice, without the expectation of getting anything in return can be a good reminder that it’s the little, simple and inexpensive things that sometimes leave the biggest impact..

Restore a little faith in humanity!!

Until next time, remind me to tell you the story of Ellen, middle-aged German women that lives by the fountain in Palma. Or the ridiculously cute and spirited little homeless black fluff-ball (dog) running the streets of Sardinia with me this morning..

Spreading the love

Gypsy xx


One Response to “Strawberry sensation..”

  1. Scarlet gray June 8, 2011 at 10:21 pm #

    Thankyou for the inspiration al, from today I am going to make effort to follow your lead! Love x

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