• By: Dave Gross

Kindness comes to call during tough times



Really wishy-washy words.

Until now.

To truly get the gist – the meaning – of what it’s truly like to be nice or kind, throw your community, your province and your country into a seemingly endless bind.

Well, we’re here now aren’t we.

Coronavirus or COVID-19 has changed our lives in so many ways (I know, I know: an incredibly astute observation . . . ). But it’s also bringing out the best in our best people.

I am one of the fortunate folks who isn’t logjammed at home without fresh air or the occasional blip of sunshine and spring-time warmth.

I have a new dog for that (well-documented in last week’s opus on this page). We’re out first thing in the morning, usually around 6:30 or 7 in the morning.

Maggie, as she’s just a pup, gets plenty of walk-time. We’re out ‘practicing social distancing’ about six times a day.

So, the fresh air is well earned.

The only other times I head out is a couple of times a week for groceries (and lots of dog food!).

This is where the word ‘nice’ rolls in.

Kind, gracious, a heart-warming sense of humour, patience and – in spite of exhaustion – is where I want to fire this week’s arrow.

First, I’d like to apologize for the lack of hockey talk on here. But these are, as many have said, extraordinary times. Hockey can take a back seat . . . for now.

Back to the theme.

Kindness is unexpected in the over-stressed service industry, but somehow people working the front lines seem to have it.

I want to circle a specific group of workers. They work at my local Metro grocery store.

If you’re in Kanata, you will know it. The Metro is located off of Carling (and March Road).

Are there lineups?

Sure. Everyday, generally all day.

But they move. Slowly but surely.

The staff at the front of the store, the entrance-way, always have a kind word, a big smile and a friendly greeting.

“Thank you for your patience.”

That’s what I hear at this particular Metro consistently.

Beyond that, the entire staff bends over backwards to make sure you get what you need, and if they’re out of stock, the employees offer smart alternatives.

Some of the cashiers are on their feet hours upon hours upon hours.

Yet they always share a grin and a “how are you doing?”

These folks have plenty to potentially grumble about. Customers can be a big pain in the ass, but they take it in stride and continue on with good intention.

It is not easy work. Physically demanding and emotionally draining, I doubt I could pull it off with the same aplomb.

You folks are the spirit that stays with me – especially in the last two weeks.

Big standing ovation from this corner.

Look at a rose bush. These workers focus on the flowers, not the thorns.

Tragedy summons strength. Even in what some might call minor roles.

Thank you.

And thanks for the toilet paper too!

Senators – the week ahead:

Who knows?