Five Bucks

I was commuting on the TTC (subway), fleeing downtown Toronto after work on a cold winter day. The train was packed with people, probably with the same exodus mentality. There was a gentleman, sitting near one of the doors, reading his newspaper, with a grim face on. Then a middle-aged woman, who was ready to get off the train at the next stop, stopped next to the man on her way out, handed him a $5 note, and said “go buy a cup of coffee, you look so sad”. The guy was a bit surprised at first, but then smiled in embarrassment, replying, “I’m fine, thank you”, and returned the money. It’s quite a surprise to me too. I ride the “Rocket” on a daily basis, and have come across a lot of “curious” people (trust me when I say a lot); however, this episode is by far my favourite. The exchange was genuine and cosy. Guess what, that gentleman just happened to have a grim face when not smiling, but I find that woman’s act of caring rather touching. These days, we seldom have time to care about people around us, not to say total strangers. This nice lady didn’t look like she was “rich”, or had a lot of spare money to give away. Five dollars may not be a lot of money, but it means a lot when you show your care and thoughtfulness. I felt warmer on my way home.