My wife and I buy flowers generally on a weekly basis. There are 3 flower sellers in the vicinity of a nearby temple. We used to buy from the largest seller whose collection was varied, and stock looked mostly fresh. This shop was housed in a brick structure. The shop also expanded to selling vegetables, fruits and puja articles. But with the increase in business, the owners grew less concerned about their customers. We also wanted to avoid crowds. So, we moved to the next vendor. This one was run by a lady on a large bench with some plastic sheets for shelter overhead. The lady there was generally courteous but unkempt. One day, we tried the 3rd vendor – this “shop” was just a small stand and the lady had only an umbrella to shade her. Her husband was a tailor who sat nearby in a small shop. We had used this shop a few times.
One day when I asked for my regular lot of loose flowers for Rs 100, the tailor asked the lady to add an extra lot saying – “He does puja daily” (referring to me). How he knew I do puja daily is still a mystery to me. But I was touched. I don’t expect favours from small vendors, knowing their financial conditions. This gesture was heart-warming. Needless to say, this stand has become our regular shop for flowers. The man also comes sometimes and helps by choosing the fresh ones from the lot especially for me.
Financial status has nothing to do with the ability to be kind.
~ Subhash Iyer