A gesture of love

Even as he approached the glass door, he saw a sweet 11-year-old squatting by the sidewalk, sobbing quietly. “Why are you crying, little child?” Michael asked.

“I wanted to buy a bunch of roses for my mother. It costs Rs 50 but the money that I have cannot buy me a bunch,” the girl replied.

“Don’t worry, I will get you a bouquet of roses,” Michael consoled her.

Michael gave her a bouquet of roses and paid for it. He told the florist to deliver a bouquet with a greeting card to his mother at Sakleshpur. It was her birthday today.

“Uncle, thank you! Please forgive me for bothering  you,” said the little girl, who introduced herself as Suzanne.

As she began to walk away, Michael asked if she would like a ride home.

“It would be really nice if you could drop me at my mother’s place,”  said Suzanne.  And she directed him led to a cemetery on Hosur Road!

Michael parked the car at the cemetery gate. His eyes followed Suzanne as she alighted, thanked him for the ride and walked into the cemetery. She went to a freshly-dug grave, placed the bouquet on the tomb stone and stood still in prayer.

Tears welled up in Michael’s eyes. The next moment he turned his car around and headed to the florist’s shop. He cancelled the mail order, collected the bouquet himself and drove 250 kilometres to Sakleshpur to be with his mother that evening.

For ailing Dorothy, it was a pleasant surprise and a special birthday. Michael was home with her after many, many years.  Little Suzanne had taught him a great lesson in lieu of a small gesture.

Parents need real love and caring company. Flowers and greeting cards are but poor substitutes for true caring and sharing.

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