How My Simple Act Of Kindness To An Hungry Stranger Saved My Life Years Later
Kindness they say melts the heart of even the hardened man. I never knew the importance of being kind to my fellow man until I showed an act of random kindness to a stranger who years later, saved me when I was attacked by hoodlums.
I was in my final year in the polytechnic and staying off campus.
One fateful day, I was returning from school. I had just N200 left on me. The sun was scorching that afternoon so I decided to take a bus home.
I walked down to the bus stop to get a bus and while waiting for a bus heading my way, I began contemplating within myself on how best to manage the money that will be left on me after paying a bus fare of N100.
I was extremely exhausted and hungry. I had just a cup of garri left in the house. It was middle of the week and wouldn't get any more money until the following week.
While I was pondering, a tattered looking young man of about 25 years from nowhere approached me. I turned and took a deep stare at him. He first apologized to me and then told me that he hasn't eating anything since the previous day and was very hungry.
I could see the pangs of hunger on his face. He was practically begging me to save him from dying of hunger. All he asked for was just N20 to buy garri to eat.
I looked at him in pity. I could relate with his situation. I know what hunger does to the mind. However, I was having little cash on me.
Within few seconds, so many thoughts were running through my mind. How will I survive the week with just the N100 that will be left on me after paying for the bus fare?
Giving the hungry young man N20 out of it means that I will also go hungry for days.
The young man could see the uneasiness in me as he pleaded continuously.
I couldn't hold back the tears that formed in my eyes. I brought out the last N200 on me and handed it to the guy. I told him to manage the money and get himself a decent meal.
He looked at me in utmost surprise and thanked me. He was almost prostrating for him when I told him not to.
Immediately I handed him the cash, I turned back and decided to trek home under the extremely hot weather.
I sweated profusely on my long walk home. I encouraged myself that I did the right thing by helping out someone that was desperately in need.
I got home about an hour later and settled for a bowl of garri with ice water from my neighbour's fridge.
I went to bed that evening with no hope of eating the next day. I got to school the next day and borrowed some cash from a course mate.
I completed my studies at the polytechnic, went for my one year National Youth Service and got a job four months after I returned from service.
I was returning home from work one evening at about 8pm. I was with the sum of N120,000 to pay my new landlord for a year's rent. I also had my android phone and laptop with me. As I was walking through a lonely path, some fierce looking guys cornered me. They were about six in numbers and heavily armed.
I was scared to my teeth as I saw the weapons they pointed at me. They threatened to stab me to death if I didn't cooperate. They collected my phone, shoe and requested for the money with me.
I took out my wallet and handed it over to the guy I thought was the gang leader. Another guy from behind landed a slap on my face and demanded for the bag containing the laptop and 120K.
As I was handing over the bag to one of them, I heard someone called out to them from behind.
I heard the gang hailing him and calling him "Jericho". They all showed respect to him. When he saw me, he was really angry with his boys. He told them that I was his benefactor. He gave the guy I thought was the leader a terrible slap on the face.
I was shocked and confused at the same time. I didn't dare look at his face. He instructed them to return what they collected from me immediately, which they did without complaining. Afterwards, he instructed them to prostrate and apologize to me.
When they were done apologizing, he gave them the mandate to always look out for me and ensure no one troubles me in the future.
I was still very confused when I thanked him for his timely intervention.
He then accompanied me through the lonely path and asked me if I still recognized him. I truthfully replied that I didn't. He smiled at me and told me to recall some years back at the bus stop outside my school's gate when he approached me for N20 to buy garri because he hasn't eaten for over a day. I nodded in remembrance. He went ahead to tell me that he was amazed when he saw the tears of compassion in my eyes and gave him N200 to get a decent meal.
He further told me that he could tell that it was my last cash that I gave him because he saw me leaving the bus stop and trekking home under the sun.
He thanked me again for showing him kindness on that fateful day because he was almost dying of hunger. He gave me his contact and told me to call him anytime I was being harassed by anyone.
After we parted ways, I felt relieved. I couldn't believe that my singular selfless act of kindness to a stranger years back will save me from danger.
I was so grateful to God for giving me that ability to give on that day. I also felt grateful to Jericho for coming to my rescue.
How true is the saying that "every good act deserves another".
Do good at all times. Help others in need. Challenge yourself by engaging in act of random kindness.
Show some love this Valentine's season. You never know what your act of kindness might bring to you in the future.
Happy Valentine in advance!!
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