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Smiling Man

Author: Dr. Shireen Hussain

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It was a very cold morning, I had set out to do so many things and just could not gure out what to do when. The driver parked the car just outside the gate to shut the gate, when standing on the pavement I saw a man enjoying his morning cup of tea. I looked towards him and got a “million dollar smile” from him. I had the good sense to smile back. When the car drove off he even waved at me, and I waved back. Then kept wondering who this person was? His smile just cheered me up.

He was shabbily but completely well dressed, in the sense that he wore shoes, socks, a shirt pants folded upto his knees, a sweater and a cap, all very dirty. I thought and thought, then nally it dawned on me, “Óh! our garbage man, who I had met just last week”. The door bell rang, since there was nobody else at home I answered, and there was this man telling me something in gestures, guessed it was the garbage man and assumed he was asking for his monthly remuneration, ran up got my purse, when the man tells me "Illaa kaas illaa, beega beega, (No not money, key, key). He meant the key to the bin. He told me the bin was dirty so he would wash it and since we lock the bin as some thief carried it away once before, he wanted the key. He did his job so well with a smile on his face, locked the bin gave me the key and when I reached for my purse, he tells me no no no money, a smile and wave of his hand and he left. It was only a week ago and I had forgotten his face, but the smile ashed back.

Then thoughts just went on in my mind, this man does such an essential job for us, do we appreciate him? Or even show our appreciation at least once in a way? On the other hand he reaches out and gives us such warm smiles and greets and wishes us so warmly, do we wish him back? Thank God I had the good sense to wish him that day.

A thought just occurred to me that if only we reach out to one person who collects our garbage ( EACH ONE REACH ONE) and show our appreciation for what he/she does for us, will it make a difference? Appreciation in the form of a gift on festivals or on our Birthdays, or a hot cup of tea or breakfast when they come in the morning to collect the garbage and sweep our streets, a smile, a thank you, instead of just screaming at them that they do a shoddy job. Wish some of us try this and see if it makes a difference. Have not started yet, but want to do it with our own GARBAGE SMILING MAN.

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