While walking recently, as I was crossing the road, I noticed a small plush teddy bear lying in the middle of the road. Clearly it had been dropped (thrown?) out of a pram and a busy, distracted carer had kept walking to reach the safety of the other side and hadn’t noticed.
My first instinct was to pick it up and carry it to safety, but for a moment the paranoia of the last two COVID years kicked in, and hygiene and sanitation spectres screamed at me, ‘Don’t touch it!’ Fortunately it was only for a moment before I wished them back to where they came.
I scooped it (I want to give it a gendered pronoun – him or her?) up and, I confess gingerly, carried her to the other side of the road. Looking around, I decided that propped up against the nearest fence in a seated position would be the best chance of her being spotted by the carer who might retrace their steps to look for the missing, loved (I presume) cuddly friend at the behest of some frantic child.
I went on with my day, forgetting all about it until the next morning when I was retracing my steps on that walk. I stopped at the fence where our furry teddy had rested while waiting patiently to be found. She was gone!
In my world, I’d like to think a re-union had taken place with loud exclamations of, ‘There you are!’ and ‘I was really worried about you’ with warm, tight cuddles to follow from her overjoyed infant ‘friend’. I’d like to think that my small act of kindness impacted three lives. Or was it four?