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  • A blind woman sat down next to me on the bus today. Well, actually she fell on top of me as the bus hurtled away from the curb. The driver, so lost in her own world of schedules and apathy, paid no heed to the fact she was still standing in the aisle asking me if the seat to my right was free or not.

    The seat was free, but had been hooked up for some reason. I couldn't unhook it and the people sitting behind the seat stared at me as I tried. So, I explained the situation and the blind woman thanked me anyway and plonked herself down in the free seat to my left instead.

    The woman was happy and a little chatty. I had seen her on the bus previously, always with a smile and thanks for the drivers and fellow passengers who helped her out. She got me thinking...

    We all see the world in a different way. I 'see' primarily in images and colors, she 'sees' through the sounds, vibrations and feelings she receives through other parts of her body. Yet, in another way we 'saw' life in the same way today.

    I, too, had gotten on the bus and said hello to the driver, asking her how she was. She either didn't hear me, or chose to ignore me. I didn't mind. It's a difficult job and I can understand why she might not being happy in it. I have been in her situation and come out of the other side, realizing that it's less about liking the situation and more about making the most of it in order to be a happy person. (And the truth is that some people don't realize they can choose to be happy.)

    I have chosen to be happy, like the blind lady beside me. Like her, I see that being generous with others through my actions makes me happier than if I am quiet and sullen or withdrawn from society around me. Therefore, I now make a point of greeting and thanking everyone who helps me through my day as I have seen the blind lady do every time I encounter her.

    (Or... at least, I try. I don't always succeed...)

    Life isn't always how we wish it was. There isn't always an available seat on the bus or someone to guide us to one that's free, but I believe that if we're willing to be generous with our actions anyway, the outcome of the situation is insignificant. Whether we are greeted in return is less important than whether we gave the greeting, especially considering what a friend of mine told me recently: witnessing a good deed has the same affect on the brain as doing a good deed. Therefore, being generous with our actions will have an affect on those who witness our generosity later on down the line.

    It can be difficult not to immediately receive back that which we put into the world, yet it does return back to us in some way at some point, and often times when we least expect it to.

    That's the way that I see the world anyway, and I think the blind lady would probably agree.

    I'm grateful for her wise lessons and repeated reminder to be generous.

    I'm also grateful that there's never a dull moment when you're stuck taking the bus, even when you hate the fact you have to take it.
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