Sunday, 26 February 2012

The Banking Of Good Deeds

I am working tonight.

I should have been working last night too, what with this bloody awful computerised off duty that quite stupidly thinks that Sunday is in fact the first day of the week.... who would have heard of it? Sunday not being part of the "week -END"..... Its just a crafty way of getting part timers to work all weekend.
As it turned out I managed to swap last night's shift to one a little more conducive to good marital relations, and it is the kindness of people like the nurse who swapped this shift, that I shall discuss today children!

I know Chris as a regular church goer would say, that we should all do kind deeds without any expectation of getting repaid in any way. Now while I agree that we should all try to be better people, I do pragmatically believe in that good old fashioned phrase "one good deed deserves another".

Now does that make me unchristian?
Perhaps?, but I do think it makes me a realist.
The nurse that swapped my shift, was the nurse who I did a favour for last month. I kept her happy by swapping my holiday rota around so she could go to her daughter's graduation and in turn she felt happy at doing me a little kindness this month.

"Kindness oils the cogs of the real world"

The RFWF helped me take the pigs to slaughter and has given me a load of sawdust for the poultry coops, I give him eggs and pork for his freezer.
Auntie Gladys was left a bloody pigs liver last month and again a reciprocal bag of scones was carefully placed on the cottage doorknob.
Spare bantam eggs are left with a certain slipper maker in the village and hey presto an extra pair of handcrafted slippers appeared, all shiny and new.

The important thing to remember about favours is not to expect one to be returned.
The law of averages will mean that in all probability that they will, but this is not always the case but at least, if they are not,  you can bask in the warm glow that deep down, you are a lovely person.
.. yeah right.....
If you are on the receiving end of an unsolicited  kindness, then  it is prudent that something thoughtful is done in return.....a kind note, a few eggs, a token of politeness is sometimes the order of the day. It takes little to organise and is vital lubrication for "smooth living"

A few minutes ago a couple from nearby Prestatyn called around. They had been bitten by the "chicken bug" a while back and have attended our "open allotment days" for the past two years with some enthusiasm.
Their reason for visiting? well they had a chicken coop and run spare and thought I could use it.
It was a kind gesture, for the whole thing was almost brand new and could have been sold off privately, but they rather sweetly thought that I ( and more importantly the blind Rooster Cogburn) could benefit more from it...
I shall think of a way to repay the ladies in the spring. I thought a couple of robust chicks may be gratefully received or even a turkey poult.........they have a thing for turkeys!

A good deed is nothing really special. It is  really just a show of good manners.
Didn't your mother ever teach you that?

Oh I am about to hitch up my wimple to run amok over the Welsh Hills...........


  1. The picture of Julie Andrews makes me want to burst into song; but nothing from TSOM.

  2. Life would be greatly impoverished if it wasn't for people offering mutual kindnesses and acts of generosity to each other. A world where people only did strictly what they were expected to do would be miserable indeed.

  3. I am sure I was going to write a witty comment but the vision of you and a hitched up wimple running amok over the Welsh Hills gave me a shock as I am sure it will the sheep.

  4. Or, as my mother used to say, 'what goes around, comes around...'

  5. Do unto others before they do it to you has always been my motto!

  6. Yes, a wimple. That is definitely more JG, the Welsh St Francis of Assisi and all round good egg, than a Laura Ashley headscarve knotted firmly under the nose.

  7. What you're talking about sounds like good old-fashioned barter to me.

  8. I agree "one good......". There are people who are always willing to help out and in turn I am more than willing to pitch in for them. And I wish I could see you doing your Julie Andrews imitation.
    Cheers and may more good things come your way.

  9. Hi John!
    Glad the coop and run will be put to good use - love today's piece!
    Can picture you in a wimple......very fetching.....!
    Our girls blog is at
    Hope to see you again soon!

  10. Agreed on all accounts, good turns should be acknowledged, it is only polite, is it not?

  11. I like especially that you've written a post about this John. Thanks! But the fish may be slightly wonky by the time they get to you!
    What was particularly good was that you reject the idea that one good turn demands immediate reciprocity to said good deeder. I'm finding this sentiment really hard to deal with at the moment. It seems to be the domain of control freaks.

  12. happy running there John!

  13. I absolutely agree about the "one good turn" business but it can get awkward sometimes.
    At work I am often on the receiving end of unsolicited "good turns" from a slimy individual who is constantly trying to buy friendship with favours and little gifts. She will remember every chocolate biscuit and custard cream she ever gave. She will buy a pair of earrings to "go with" an item of my wardrobe that I have long since forgotten I had and last wore to work ten years ago.

    It's difficult to know how to deal with this without seeming rude or ungrateful.

  14. As you say John...simply good manners.

  15. I totally agree with you John! Call it one good dead, reaping what you sew, karma, whatever you'd like, I do think that people remember your kindness and when you're less than that...I know I do--I am finding that Scottish Terriers are that way too...

  16. A kind deed is what keeps the universe singing. Sounds like you live in a lovely place.

  17. tom I think it is a cross between old fashioned bartering and maintaining ties and relationships which can be mutually helpful

  18. "CLIMB EVERY MOUN-TAIN!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!"

  19. I'm with Delores - John's neighbourhood sounds absolutely charming.
    And Jean, I have one of those stalker-types at work. I finally had to "break up" with her. It got kinda ugly. There are always weirdos in every crowd, methinks. Generally, though, I love good deeds. And I love Julie Andrews. I can totally picture John in that whimple singing his giving and glorious heart out.

  20. Have fun running amok!

  21. You will never trip on a wimple, so you're good to go for a long, long time. If only the world could recognize how simple it is to do the right thing.

  22. I think this is wonderful! I worry that it is dying out in our society though,the be kind,return favors,help you neighbor way of life.

  23. I am a firm believer that what comes around, goes around, cast your bread and all that.
    For years I have done voluntary work, I am constantly amazed at people who either don't believe it is unpaid or ask Why do I do it!

  24. I think that 'hitching up your wimple' maybe illegal.
    Jane x

  25. Oh that visual!! Thanks for that John!
    'No man is an island.'

  26. Great post, John.
    Good food for thought, too.

  27. I had a kitchen magnet on the fridge for years that read, "You can't repay kindness; you pass it on."

    I find the more i pass along, the more i receive. Yes, there are those who give things with expectations, but that's not really a gift--it's a bribe. It's not just the deed itself, but the spirit in which it's given, and that's the invisible oil that encourages us to want to help others as we are able, to for them to help us.

    Enjoy running amok and singing!


  28. I wholeheartedly agree with the a good turn deserves another. However, anyone leaving me a pig's liver would receive poisoned scones in return. We only had it once - when my parents found us calling each other 'you pig's liver, you' as the ultimate insult it was removed from the family menu.

  29. A bloody pig's liver left on someone's doorstep may be seen as a threat!

  30. I never expect anything in return when I "do a favour". In fact, I'm always kinda dissapointed when the person I did a favour, gives it right back at me. And by the same token, I will refuse any favour from someone whom I know will expect to get something back!

    "Passer au suivant" we say in French which I think would mean "pass along". When you give out something, you inevitably get back, but not necessarily from those who have received it from you in the first place.

    That's the basic law of life. As another follower said: "What goes around, comes around".

  31. Hubs once did an artificial insemination on a neighbors cow and recieved in exchange 4 peacocks which multiplied into 30 and now run wild on our farm killing all my flowers as they start to bloom. The moral of the story? I have no idea but I do have free peacocks. Pick up only.

  32. Sorry, but Sunday is the first day of the week. That's why I like my weekend to start on a Monday and carry on for the next six days. I live in hope.

  33. A virtually brand new coop and run sounds more than just a good deed--it sounds like a pretty major gift to me (but what do I know, as having never raised chickens?).

    What's a wimple (for us Americans) that you're going to hitch up to ride roughshod over the Welsh countryside?

  34. This is a great post John. You've hit the nail on the head: With being good for righteous reasons there is the risk of cold charity while mutually beneficial bartering strengthens community bonding. I do believe in the pass-it-on philosophy too, partly from travelling when you can't repay easily once you've moved on, but can offer a bed and sustainence to other travellers at a later date, and also from recent events here. It would be impossible to repay every kindness that was done for me after Elwin's death but I can make sure that I am part of community support in other people's tragedies like er... earthquakes.
    I do have a close family member who operates on the 'owe me a favour' principle. Don't like that at all.


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