On Mondays, my husband and I not only sweat our way through the neighborhood, we snake our way through the smell; Monday is garbage pick-up day.
As we passed a truck this morning, we saw a gentlemen in his late 60s walk out of his front door to hand the garbage collector a few dollars. “It's a small tip today,” he said, “but thank you.”
I have tipped bellhops, house cleaners, servers, taxi drivers, mail carriers, doormen. Never garbage collectors. Yet, of all the menial jobs a person can do, this so deserves something extra: a person whose job it is to serve up malodorous detritus into a steel maw — daily.
Said Mother Teresa, “Be generous and understanding. Let no one come to you without feeling better and happier when they leave. Be the living expression of God's kindness: with kindness on your face, kindness in your eyes, kindness in your smile, kindness in your warm greeting.” Or as Ruma Bose writes in Mother Theresa CEO, “Be kind to the janitor.”
That's what I saw this morning.
My neighbor took a moment to be kind to, to acknowledge our neighbor.
To be the see-er of his garbage collector's magnificence.