I noticed her sitting cross legged, with the daily paper unfolded in front of her, on one of the raised seats under a shady tree in Rundle Mall, Adelaide, South Australia.
I moved to sit quietly beside her. She turned and smiled and we started conversation.
Within a few minutes I took out my bag of little Buddhas and told her I was giving away gifts given to me by people all around the world.
She turned her body towards the array of little Buddhas as I stood them to attention.
‘Cool!’ she exclaimed.
‘Would you like to choose one? ‘
‘Sure,’ she replied.
She looked at 2 or 3 quite closely and was keen to know who had donated them and which country each person was from.
She carefully chose a solid earth touching Buddha.
She liked the fact it was so surprisingly weighty for such a little thing. We talked about the significance that could be held in small items and even in small actions.
“You’ve made my day. ” she grinned, as the little Buddha looked more and more at home in the palm of her hand.
As we chatted it was revealed that even though she lived 8 kms away from the Mall she made the trip in three times a week so she could deliver random acts of compliments to people passing by.
This was a woman who had discovered the power of the gift of kindness.
Occasionally she experienced a hostile reaction she said, but largely people stopped and engaged happily with her when she told them she liked what they were wearing- maybe a bright shirt or pretty skirt.
Her smile broadened as she shared,
” The newspaper is just a prop, love. I am never really reading it. Just biding my time until I get the urge to jump in with a compliment to someone passing by. I always go home uplifted after my days sitting here. I’m not one for communicating on Facebook. I prefer to connect with real people even if I don’t know anything about them.”
I share little buddhas, she shares compliments and together we shared a lovely communication with each other under a tree in Rundle Mall.
Buddha donated by Akasajoti, UK