So, it would seem that yesterday was my day for children.
I pick my mom up at the Mall every afternoon. Sometimes she is in Maxi’s and we have a cup of coffee before going home, other times she goes to the coffee shop at Woolies if she has to buy a few things there.
Because of the ANC Youth League march in Sandton yesterday, the bosses of her company sent them home early, which meant that I had to leave my work early, cause it isn’t nice keeping a 64-year-old lady waiting.
As I walked into Woolies, I could hear a child crying… but it sounded like a frustrated cry. The closer I got to the food market the harder the cry became. My mom was telling me he was upset when they walked into the shop already. But as it turned out it became a fight between the little boy and his mom, because he wanted sweets and his mom said no.
Now, this is one thing I don’t agree with, is the sweetie isle in Woolies leading up to the cashier, mainly because sometimes the parents don’t have money for sweets or the kids can’t choose what they want.
By the time we got to the queue where he and his mom was, he was shouting at her to leave him alone. And of course she was embarrassed because he was being rude and the old aunties were shaking their heads. Not a helpful situation.
She went to pay, and he seemed to calm a little when no one was watching, however on the way out, he grabbed a pack of sweets and wouldn’t leave the shop without it. And the crying started all over again.
By now you heard an audible sigh from everyone in the shop and all I was thinking was the poor mom, because now he was running away from her. So, I did something that she could have been upset about.
I took a chocolate, a little one, asked her if I could talk to him, so she gave me a weary smile. He was standing about 10 metres away, so I walked up to him with a smile on my face. I heard my mom saying in the background to the mommy that I have a knack with kids and I’ll sort him out.
I knelt down on my knees with this wide-eyed kid staring at me.
“Are you having a bad day?” I asked.
He looks at me.
“I like your shirt. Are you Ben 10?”
I get a nod and a smile. No crying. But clutching the packet of sweets.
“Why are you crying Ben 10? I’ve never seen you cry before”.
“So what is your name?”
“Well Jake, I have an idea… I have this nice chocolate here, and I would like to give it to you, but only if you promise me not to cry and go with mommy and give me those yucky sweets.”
The wheels in his head are turning. He is thinking about this proposition.
“Do we have a deal?”
I get a smile and a nod of the head.
“Want me to open the chocolate for you?”
“Yes please” he says.
I open the chocolate.
“Now remember you said you would go with mommy and not cry okay?”
A nod of the head, he takes the chocolate and runs to his mom.
I get up and the whole shop is staring at me.
My mom smiling broadly, almost in tears actually.
He stops running. Turns around and says “thank you” cause his mom told him to. And there they go off hand in hand.
Maybe what I did was wrong, but I don’t think that little boy was expecting a stranger to talk to him. I felt sorry for him and the mom. Cause the mom was totally embarrassed at the situation and the little boy, cause he must have had a crap day to be crying like that before they even got to the sweetie isle.
Anyway, that was my good deed for the day. Thought I’d share…
Have a sweet everyone.