Short story Thought and Reason

A bagful of peanuts

Every now and then, something beautiful comes my way to show me that Life is the greatest humbler! 

For instance, all of you (my regular readers) know I have been in India during the Easter break. I usually carry bundles of old clothes (in great condition) to give away to maids/helpers back home. This time again, I took a box of clothes and my mum distributed it among some regular helpers. One particular shirt was slightly over-sized and hardly used, and we decided to give it to our fruit-seller for one of his three sons. He accepted it with his usual quiet demeanour and left without saying a word. I wondered if he even appreciated that it was still a good shirt and would use it for his child, or quickly sell if off for a few rupees on the footpath the next day!!

Let me quickly clarify that I was NOT looking for ‘gratitude’ as people sometimes do. My belief is that people who receive things from me are actually doing me a favour by helping de-clutter my house and in turn, my life! So there was no question of gratitude. Only, a subconscious wish for some sign of ‘acknowledgement’.

Anyway, a few days passed, and the incident had completely vanished from memory.

Late one hot summer evening, the door bell rang. Mum answered it, and was surprised to see none other than the fruit-seller. He simply stood there, quiet as he always was, looking looking tired in a crumpled brownish-yellow shirt that was once probably white.

Mum was surprised, because it wasn’t the time to buy/sell fruits! She opened the door anyway, not knowing what to expect! Usually, helpers who visit late in the evening, are looking for some help, usually in the form of money. We waited to see what he would say/ask for.

To our surprise, the fruit-seller just passed his hand around the half-open iron-grill-gate and handed over a bag overflowing with fresh peanuts (monkeynuts). And walked away without a word.

We stared at each other – dumbstruck, tears brimming our eyes. A big bag of nuts. It would have probably made an excellent snack for three hungry children that were waiting for him back home. Yet, he chose to give it to us. In his own quiet, humble way, he had shown us that to give something, one only needs a big heart!!

The magnanimity of the poor fruit-seller left us utterly humbled!!

I don’t think I have words enough to explain the lesson in humility that I learnt that day. It was certainly one of the most beautiful incidents ever.

I wish we had more of such people around. They certainly make the world a better place!

This post is a participation in the Blogsplash (24th April 2012) in celebration of FionaRobyn‘s book ‘The Most Beautiful thing”.

28 replies on “A bagful of peanuts”

That was indeed some gesture!!
 Thanks Saxy
Btw your egg pic fooled me to think that you will show off that you actually do sit with R and help him to make Easter Eggs…phew!!!
LOL! No no, arty work is not one of my talents 😉

That is beautiful.. god bless the good people because of whom the world is a beautiful place to live in..
Who think of others…
Very true Bikki.. God bless the fruit-seller for his magnanimity! 
People like you and the fruit seller and Manu others…
Not me Bikki.. I was only de-cluttering. Quite selfish!

What a beautiful, moving story. Deep bow.
Thank you Fiona, for coming up with the event that lead me to writing about this incident. Otherwise it would have only remained a part my my memory!

Deeply touched. It brings back faith to the jaded, that life, no matter how difficult, becomes beautiful in giving. Simply moving.
Usha, you are spot on, and that too, in true poetic fashion 🙂

Such a touching experience. Goes to show dignity and integrity have nothing to do with a college degree and a bank account.
Absolutely, Kaapizone. It was an experience that shook me!

I will share this with my MIL who feels that all helps are cheats and their purpose in life is to make money from us.
We need to tell this story to keep our faith in humankind alive 🙂
LOL! We do encounter loads of cheats, but at the risk of sounding cliched, there are some genuine folks around 🙂 I hope your MIL is influenced by this, even if it is very slight 😉

[…] Remember the innovative ‘Blogsplash’ conducted by Fiona Robyn (author of ‘The Most Beautiful Thing’)? My contribution to the Blogsplash was a little story about a touching incident that took place on my last trip to India. I’m very glad to say that of all the entries, mine was chosen as the top entry! It is not like ‘I’ won something. It was the gesture of one humble man that has moved people to tears. Please do read it. Here: […]

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