This Easter break I have seen it all when it comes to human nature. From the very good to the very bad. I am going to stick with just one example however as this one has a bit of everything.
On the Thursday before Good Friday, on a relatively male dominated forum I frequent (no I am not trawling for men, although for single ladies, this is really not a bad idea!), a fellow that I have never met posted something that had many of us worried and all of us angry at some of the low-life acts that humans can perpetrate on each other.
This bloke, whom I shall call
Steve for the sake of the exercise (not his real name – or at least I don’t think it is!) has recently set up his own business and as anyone who has done this knows, in the beginning you struggle to find your market and get repeat business. Needless to say he’s been doing it tough financially. Steve also has a chronic illness and suffers with depression. His much loved mum also passed away on Good Friday so, even though not technically the anniversary of her death, the day is still forever a sad one.
To top off what has been a less than stellar start to his new career, the vehicle he absolutely must have to carry out his new profession died and needs a new engine. He found a secondhand one online (it’s a difficult to find one apparently) and the seller wanted a rather large deposit before he was prepared to ship it interstate.
Steve scrimped and saved until he had enough for the deposit and duly passed on the money and he also paid for and booked a spot on a road-train to bring the engine to him. The seller never got the engine to the scheduled collection and has not returned Steve’s many calls, messages and emails.
This is “The Bad” part of this story. Someone, for whatever reason, stole money from/defrauded another person without a care in the world for the impact their actions would have on the poor victim of their selfish act. This is what saddens me about what is becoming an all-too-frequent occurrence. When did so many people become devoid of a conscience? How did we fail at what I consider a necessity in basic human decency? When did this selfishness creep in?
Anyway the act of this low-life was the straw that broke the camel’s back and it would appear has pushed
Steve to the edge as, reading between the lines of his post, he is now struggling to find reasons to not end his life and the only thing that has kept him here are the thought of his kids.
So many of the forum regulars, me included, posted words of encouragement and support to
Steve but you got a sense of everyone wanting to do more. I will admit I tossed and turned a bit that night wondering what I could do to help and hoping Steve hadn’t done anything stupid.
The next morning I found a personal message from another forum member commenting on what I had said and also saying he wished he could do something to get Steve back his money. From there stemmed the idea of an ANZAC Day “Whip Round” of the virtual hat. Some 100 personal messages later and here comes “The Good” which has gone some way to restoring my faith in humanity.
Some of the people on that forum know me personally but the vast majority do not, although I have been there over 5 years now. Without batting an eyelid or showing any concern about having no real idea who I was, every single person we contacted has dug deep for a mate. Not only did we manage to get enough to recoup
Steve’s lost dollars, but with my husband’s contacts in the motor vehicle industry, we will be able to buy Steve a brand new motor as well.
This is the true Aussie spirit. The spirit of ANZAC and mateship.
Lest we forget!