A man of few means took his little nieces and nephews to a fete. The entry was free and the enthusiastic pack of children had fun, looking at the crowds going up and down on the giant wheel and the Columbus ride. Some of the rides were free and others were available for a price. The man carefully navigated his pack of tiny tots to the free rides. Much as he would have loved to take them for all the other rides, he just didn’t have the money to do so.
All of them enjoyed themselves as they ran hand in hand from one see-saw to the other. They let out peals of laughter as they pushed each other on the swings. Sometime later they were tired and they were hungry too! One of them saw an ice-cream seller. Other children were crowding around the ice-cream cart and enjoying their ice-creams. This little fellow looked longingly at the ice-cream. The man noticed this and decided to buy an ice-cream for him. But should he buy it for him alone and not for the other six? He put his hands into his pocket and drew out all the money. He carefully counted all the coins and added them up. He went up to the ice-cream seller and said, “How much for an ice-cream cornetto eh?” The ice-cream vendor said, “Rs.13.50” The man said, “Do you have anything cheaper?” The vendor said, “Yeah, you can buy a choco-bar for Rs.10.” “Is that the cheapest?” “Yes,” said the vendor. The man wiped the sweat off his brow and lowered his eyes as he clutched the forty eight rupees in his clammy hand. He couldn’t possibly buy six ice-creams in that money and he also couldn’t buy it for just one child and leave the rest of them wanting.
Just then he felt a tap on his shoulder, “Excuse me, this just fell out of your pocket,” said a man as he thrust two hundred rupees into his hand. The man knew that the money had not fallen out of his pocket but he saw the coaxing look on the strangers face and the expectant looks on the faces of the brood of seven hungry kids beside him.
Reluctantly, he took the money, swallowing his pride. He gave a look of gratitude to the stranger and ordered seven cornettos for his troop.
As the stranger walked away, his twelve year old daughter caught his sleeve and said, “Dad, May I have ice-cream?” “Not today darling, it seems my money just fell out of my pocket. But I’m sure that it would have reached those who cherished their ice-cream more than you would have today. I promise I’ll get one for you tomorrow.”
Well! All of us love our children and do many things to give them the comforts of life. We perhaps don’t think twice before buying an ice-cream for them. But how often do we look beyond our own and try to do something to bring a smile on the faces of those who are lesser fortunate! There is great joy in giving, if you have never experienced it, try it just once, you shall surely get addicted to it!