Tuesday, 7 June 2016
Out and about on a school night which is very unusual. I was invited - along with a team of volunteers where I work, to the Plymouth Guild Volunteers Award night. (Actually that isn't precisely what it was called but there were so many words in the title that I have forgotten them but you get the gist.) I need to point out that I do not volunteer where I work but I did get an actual separate invitation to the event as I am Head Honcho and all round Life and Soul of the Party.
We didn't win and I am not surprised as we were playing out of our league. I mean, our volunteers are awesome but we were up against people who had built entire national charities in their spare time just because it was their passion. One gentleman was just entering his fiftieth year of volunteering. I did a lot of clapping and a bit of snivelling and felt really humble and really pleased to be in the same room as these people.
It is probably my age but sometimes, when I see people pouting into phones all flippin day long or being apparently willing to do ABSOLUTELY ANYTHING to get on some poxy reality show, after which the vast majority of contestants will sink without trace after walking the red carpet at the Toenail Clipping of the Year Awards, I have been known to get a little downhearted. However, this week, I have listened to a ninety year old lady who started volunteering when she retired because "Well you can't just sit around doing nothing when people need you, can you?" I also watched a son accept his father's award - given posthumously - for tutoring a young man to two silver medals at the Special Olympics, even when unwell with the disease that killed him, and I am comforted, that mankind is not full of shallow, annoying, self centred twonks but there are amazing people doing amazing things, quietly, all the time. And it maketh me glad.
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