This week Virgin Australia posted a pic on their social media accounts of a note found between the pages of their magazine from a stranger to one lucky unsuspecting traveller. It is just lovely:

As a mum travelling with tiny dictators, I can tell you that if I had found that message I would’ve been a blubbering soppy mess. I mean, what a beautiful human being!

Travel with kids and at best travel on your own can be downright stressful. Deadlines, delays, queues, checkpoints, screening, tickets AGHHH! So when someone takes time out of their day to brighten a complete strangers for no reward or recognition, it makes me stop and think: what a beautiful world it is that we live in.

It got me thinking about this one time when I was heavily pregnant and travelling for work from Brisbane to Melbourne. I got to the gate lounge only to discover that the plane was delayed by 45mins. The lounge was jam packed. I could feel about 100 sets of eyes avert my gaze as I waddled my way through trying to find the refuge of a seat. I gave up and settled for leaning against a wall in the most un-lady like fashion. I was flustered, sweaty, itchy all over and a bit teary to tell the truth. A businessman approached me and kindly offered me his seat. I practically leaped into the seat as fast as my bulging body would take me.

I struck up a conversation with the businessman and soon we were chatting about babies and parenthood. It was my first bub and I was keen to soak up any information I could. He recommended a book that wasn’t so much about parenting as it was about life, but had some key learnings in it for parents. I wrote down the name of the book, thanked the businessman again and boarded my flight.

At the baggage carousel in Melbourne as my ginoroumous bag came rattling down the conveyer belt guess who stepped in to whisk it off the carousel for me? Yep, that same kind businessman. AND he’d been to the bookshop on the way out of the airport and bought me a copy of the book he recommended. In my frazzled pregnant state, I never did catch his name. I stood there in the airport with the booked clutched in my sweaty hand in disbelief. That one mans kindness all those years ago has impacted me greatly. I often think of him when I’m at the airport, surrounded by all the chaos and wondering how I could pass on the same kindness to someone else.

In case you are wondering, the book was Outliers by Malcolm Gladwell.  It’s a great read and will totally change the way you see success. Hubby and I still often talk about the themes in the book. In true pay-it-forward spirit this book has done the rounds of friends, friends of friends and in fact I’ve lost track of where it is now!

So, to my kind businessman and to the girl in seat 5F: well done. You are exceptional human beings and are winning at life. This ones for you 👍