Language skills?

I love it when you can take two people who otherwise would not be able to communicate, put them together, and somehow they find a way to communicate. The other day when I was in a store, picking up a few household items - some bathroom cleansers, some batteries, and a couple of other menial items - when I walked down the greeting card aisle. I was perusing the cards when a woman sought my attention. I turned to her and in broken english, I could tell that she was asking for my help. After several gestures and words in her native language (I’m still unsure of what language it was), I knew that she was there for and needed help searching for a birthday card for a young girl, a 14-year old. After a few exchanges and some nervous laughter, I was able to find a card to her liking and we were able to find her a beautiful card that was fit for a teenage girl. Thought the process, I tried asking her if the girl was her daughter, niece, granddaughter (dare I say?). Our language incompatibilities didn’t allow for that to be answered, but the smile on her face and the multiple grateful nods she gave me were enough to make my day and make me feel as though I helped her in an immense way. Really, it was just a small gesture…but you know, it’s the small gestures that sometimes mean the most to folks. It makes me think, instead of rushing around through life at the speed of light, why don’t we sometimes slow down, take our blinders off and acknowledge each other? What are we rushing for? If I had brushed the lady off because she couldn’t communicate with me using her words, how would that have made her feel? How would it have made me feel? I had to try and I am so happy that I did. Now I wonder about the little girl who received that birthday card. I wonder if the girl received not only the card, but perhaps was handed down a story that went on to inspire her, and perhaps anyone else she tells the story to. Food for thought. (This story actually reminds me of another encounter I had a couple of years ago. I recounted it on my Celebrity Optimist blog. You can read that entry here.)