The Blind and the Buses

Thursday, March 18, 2010

Before I start my post, I want to say big THANK YOU to everyone that reads my blog. I so appreciate the comments and emails that I have received in the past few months. My little blog has quickly gone from being just a vague interest to something that I truly love. Thanks so much to everyone that I've connected with and I hope that you continue to enjoy reading here!

My little sappy speech over, I thought I'd share a story today. The other day I was riding the bus to work as usual and heard some noise at the door behind me. I turned around and saw a blind man, confidently climbing the steps, cane first. Someone got up to give him a seat and people made some room in the aisle, but he had no intention of sitting down.

Bracing himself against the side of the bus, the blind man greeted the entire bus in a loud voice and began to sing. I wish I would have jotted down the words to the song sooner, because now I don't remember them exactly. But it was something about thanking God for the beautiful, new day and his blessings. It only had about two lines and sounded more like an out-of-tune chant than a song, but it touched me.

I think that if I lost my sight I would probably expect a lot from others. I would assume that friends and family would help me get around, would read or describe things to me, and maybe even buy me one of those dogs that works with disabled people. If I were blind, I would expect help finding some sort of job and be dismayed if an employer was unwilling to accommodate me.

I don't know how much thanking God for the beautiful day I would do. I may be more inclined to remind Him that I had no idea how beautiful the day was because I couldn't see it. And I know I wouldn't be doing any singing on a bus.

The others riding the bus politely listened to the blind man and then gave him their spare change before he got off, waiting for the next bus. I'm sure he doesn't have much choice in the matter, but I'm still filled with admiration that he pushes forward, joyfully, despite his blindness.

It's quite common for blind or otherwise disabled people to sing on the buses in Bolivia for spare change. I've seen people with severe limps or deformities, deaf/mute people (okay, the mute people don't sing, but sometimes they sell little candies or something like that), extremely elderly people, and even children on the buses. And every time I do, it reminds me to appreciate a bit more the blessings that God has given to me and to share them readily with those around me.
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