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» The nicest thing someone's ever done for me

My nan
Died nearly 2 years ago, about a month after I'd started uni. During the run up to this she'd been getting very confused and very distressed and anxious about things that don't really matter, as I'm sure you'll all know old people can do. So there are a couple of stories I'd like to tell all you lovely people about some lovely people who helped her.

Story #1: She'd gone down the road to the shop to buy some milk and could have sworn she'd put the right amount of change in her pocket, but when she came to the checkout she didn't have enough. Now to any of us this wouldn't be a problem, but to her it was very distressing and embarrassing, and she got very flustered. However a very nice gentleman in the queue behind her paid for it. So thank you nice gentleman, it was only a few pence to you but it made the world of difference to my nan.

Story #2: They had closed the post office in my nan's village so she couldn't withdraw her pension any more and chip and pin was just becoming compulsory. However to someone like my nan, who couldn't remember who'd visited her that day or even what time of day it was, remembering a pin number would have been impossible. So thank you nice lady in the bank who helped when mum took nan in and asked for a special needs card where you could still sign for things - you were very nice about it and could see the problem immediately, and again a small thing for you made the world of difference to my nan.

Story #3: About a year before my nan died two men had moved in next door. It was quite obvious they were a gay couple but they were discreet and my nan never mentioned it. They had a rabbit and my nan loved animals, but hadn't been able to look after any since her dog died a few years before. She'd spend hours leaning over the fence talking to this rabbit, bless her! This couple also kept an eye on my nan as she was getting more confused and when she had the stroke that finally put her in hospital they were the ones that realised something was wrong, forced the door and called an ambulance. She eventually died of pneumonia a month later and they came to the funeral, even though they didn't really know her and really didn't have to. It meant more than they'll ever know to my family.
(Sat 4th Oct 2008, 15:02, More)

» Lies that got out of control

My new housemate
The girl I'm going to be sharing a house with next year is Australian. During the course of our house-hunting, I noticed that she cannot tell any British accent apart, at all. We met one girl who was Scottish and she knew that she was speaking slightly differently but couldn't place it at all.

Click "I like this" if you think I should spend the next year telling her all people with Northern accents are from Cornwall, and so on.
(Fri 13th Aug 2010, 14:21, More)

» B3ta Person of the Year 2010

I guess he'll disagree, but
I think Professor Kenny Martin deserves a mention, and I'll tell you why...

This year he sadly suffered one of the greatest tragedies that anyone can. It is at these times in life when we find out who we really are and through it all he has shown courage and dignity when some people would just have given up. He has been brave enough to share some of his innermost pain with complete strangers, like myself, on b3ta, and I hope that he finds some solace in that. It may sound soppy, but for me, the Prof has reminded me that although humanity can be horrific at times there is hope and that real love that even death cannot destroy still exists in this sometimes bleak and cruel world. He restores my faith in humanity and in the resilience of the human spirit, despite his suffering. It is true what they say - grief is simply the price we pay for love, and how much poorer the world would be if we chose not to pay that price.

Sorry for lack of funnies, and potentially embarrassing someone I don't know, but I felt it had to be said.

Here's to a brighter 2011.
(Mon 20th Dec 2010, 17:16, More)

» Advice from Old People

My old headteacher
when he left gave us a speech. In it he said: "You will be told that your schooldays are the best days of your life. With all due respect, I sincerely hope that they are not. I hope that your best days are always ahead of you."

I was only 16 at the time and didn't really get it then, but since I've realised, isn't that the best thing you could ever wish for anyone?
(Sun 22nd Jun 2008, 15:35, More)

» Things to do before you die

My calling
Three weeks ago I started as a PhD student at Cambridge University researching the causes of Alzheimer's disease (and other related neurodegenerative diseases such as Parkinson's, Huntingdon's, vCJD). I LOVE it and am the happiest I have ever been. The best bit? One day I may make a real, solid difference in someone's life. One day someone may be told they have early onset Alzhiemer's and instead of it being a long slow death sentence, even worse for those who love them who have to slowly watch them fade away, they may instead be told "Here's some tablets, take one a day for the next week and you'll be fine". I could be a tiny, tiny part of that possibilty.

Things to do before you die? Use what you're best at to make the biggest difference you can to whoever you can, no matter how small or unimportant it may seem. Then your life will have been worthwhile.
(Mon 18th Oct 2010, 21:23, More)
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