Extreme Kindness

Extreme Kindness


Mother nature has rolled over in her bed and is dreaming of trees the color sun-smudged pumpkins, red-rusty barns and zucchinis, unripe banana green. This is one of my favorite times of year, by far. The sun shines just as bright, but usually behind clouds. In these darker months, it’s easy for thoughts to drift more toward the melancholic. We are creatures of the light: vitamin D is integral to a well-balanced, happy-life diet.

But less sunshine doesn’t mean things can’t be as radiant, or warm. We were just recently in Winnipeg in central Canada, speaking to some middle schools. You won’t find Winnipeggers in Hawaiian shirts this time of year and you needn’t bring any SPF 30 if you’re thinking of visiting for a day or two. These hardy, uber-kind prairie dwellers have all the excuses in the world to be as bitter as the wind chill. But they aren’t. Nope, each one is as perky as the taco bell Chihuahua.

One man takes the cake though. Jose – the Mexican theme is accidental – works at a hotel in Winnipeg and I want to take a page from his book. When he hopped on my elevator going down I thought by the sheer force of his plus-sign attitude alone, the elevator would change direction. This guy put one serious smile on my face. Everyone he welcomed onto the elevator got the same engaging greeting and a how are you? Not just the knee-jerk how’s-it-going, we get a million times before lunch. Jose really wanted to know, and you felt it.

I rode the elevator with him 4 or 5 times in three days. His generous sprit was infectious and his only agenda seemed to be kindness. Little acts of kindness on the extreme life-makeover elevator going up, up, up.

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5 Responses to “Elevation”

  1. Mike Says:
    December 9th, 2005 at 12:21 am

    Ride Elevators!

  2. Val Says:
    December 9th, 2005 at 9:37 am

    Ha! Thanks for the comment Mike. It is profound in its brevity!

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