The Milk of Human Kindness

The Milk of Human Kindness

So how are we all doing?

Of course, for many, the impact of this virus has been devastating. My heart goes out to those who are sick or grieving, and to all the heroic NHS staff and key workers who are keeping the nation alive and afloat. But even those of us who are simply stuck at home need to make sure we’re looking after our physical and mental health.

One of the things that lifts my spirits is hearing stories of kindness, support and generosity. After years of Brexit bickering, it’s uplifting to see people coming together (not too close…) and helping each other out with shopping, clapping for our NHS staff, or simply keeping in touch over the garden fence or via video call. We see so much negativity in the news and on social media, but people are fundamentally good and caring, which is why everyone is (on the whole) obeying the lockdown rules.

I’ve been personally touched by of several acts of human kindness including a selection of chocolate bars that arrived in the post with a note that simply said, ‘thinking of you’; a mysterious doorstep delivery of plants and bulbs for the garden; a delivery of flour (like gold dust these days!) to learn how to make sourdough and people offering to add provisions to their shopping so that we don’t have to brave the supermarkets. And just before lockdown, Henry’s Café in Prestbury saved the day when I couldn’t find any non-dairy milk for my sister who was returning from Africa and had to go into quarantine. They gave me a free carton of Alpro: literally the milk of human kindness!

I’ve tried my best to ‘pay it forward’ with little gestures to bring a smile to the face of the people around me. I taped a packet of jelly snakes to our letterbox as a little thank you to our postman and delivered a basket of Easter bunny biscuits for a poorly toddler next door.

It’s also been fascinating to see how people are keeping themselves busy. Not just with Netflix and video games, but also enjoying stressbusting exercise and absorbing activities like baking and gardening (and cleaning the oven!) In the last month, I’ve made candles from leftover wax, walked in the bluebell woods and learned some killer kickboxing moves from my kick-ass daughter.

‘This will pass’ they say. And when it does, who knows, perhaps some of the kindness, empathy and generosity will stick around for just a little bit longer …

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