Stories of Kindness from Around the World

Paying Forward A Little Bicycle

--by Deneen, posted May 25, 2010

A couple of weeks back, my friend had a yard sale, and she offered to sell some of our stuff for us.  I thought it would be a good opportunity to clean my 7 year old son's room and get rid of some toys that he had long outgrown.  We agreed that whatever we sold in toys would be his money.

The night before the sale, we loaded up the truck with toys and a little bike that he was now too tall for.  He had taken the bike for a final spin before we left home but happily put it on the truck for the sale.  This little bike had had at least 2 previous owners that we knew of.  It was not in the best shape and it certainly was not shiny new but it was still a bike, and the tires were still good. 

We put a price of $10 on it but it didn't sell.  So, after the sale was over, my friend put it on the sidewalk with a sign that said "FREE BIKE" .  Within five minutes her doorbell rang.  A little boy was standing there.  His English was not very good but he asked if the sign was right...was the price of the bike really free?  She said yes, she said that he could have it for nothing.  He smiled, hopped on the bike and rode away.

Later that evening when I told my son how much money he had made at the yard sale, he was very excited.  Tomorrow we were going to take the money to the bank.  He asked about a few of his things, wondering if they sold.  When he asked about the bike, I told him about the little boy that he had made smile because he got the bike for free.  The grin on my son's face was truly priceless, much more than when I told him how much he had made.  He was so thrilled to hear that someone else would get good use out of that little bike. 

The bike was given to us, so in this way, I guess we got to pay it forward!


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Readers Comments

Zevelina wrote: Great! Two boys were happy and got to know how kindness works! :)
DebraE wrote: Deneen, for me, the best part of your story is your son's ~ reaction ~ to his bike being given away for free. It clearly illustrates that you are doing a great job in raising him. !
ellen Benedetto wrote: What a great story! Truly made me smile. As one who works with children in poverty i know how much that bicycle means to that little guy. The lesson learned was also invaluable as maybe one day, he too will pass it along to someone else who will cherish it as well.
glorioski wrote: Let's keep these excellent reminders coming --of the goodness in the world. We are hardwired to connect and to aid one another, because we are the other. We are just removing all of the barriers that keep us from helping a brother out! And that's a hopeful and inspiring thing!
Jagdish Kaviraj wrote: Here is an excellent example of kindness. The joy of boy after getting the bicycle cannot be narrated in words. The best way to inculcate kindness in children is to give something which they are not using free to someone in need of it.
cwruck wrote: Inspirational!
irongrace wrote: That was so nice of you, your neighbor and your son. The story made me smile so i say to you thanks.

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