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How often do you get the chance to help a complete stranger?

We had the chance twice in one night on New Year’s Eve…

A woman and her son were trying to light their sparklers just after midnight and asked us for a lighter, my boyfriend stepped in and persevered, despite the apparent risk of burning and eventually sparks began to fly and their faces lit up. We couldn’t speak their language, nor they ours, but it was interesting realising how much we all have in common. When midnight struck in each country everyone celebrated in similar ways sharing the joy of the past year’s successes and hopeful for happiness in the year to come.

(My partner assured me he’d have got bored of trying to help them and moved on if it hadn’t been for my blog.)

A little further down the street a woman was walking on her own. She had dressed up for the evening and I remember remarking that to be on her own almost immediately after midnight suggested she hadn’t had the most successful evening: I felt bad for her. She walked towards us and asked if she could walk with us, she was a little uncomfortable walking alone. There were drunks and fireworks everywhere! No problem, we replied, but our hotel was just down the road. When we reached the hotel, my boyfriend asked how much further she had to go and escorted her the rest of the way home. (Admittedly, as I walked into the hotel I questioned the wisdom of this on a number of levels… however, all was well.)

If you get the opportunity today see how far out of your way can you go to help someone, because it feels great to know that you’ve made someone a little happier, a little safer or both.