It is so very important, don’t you agree, to give thanks where it is due?
I always like to listen to the various ways
passengers thank the bus driver as they alight from his vehicle. “Cheers!” some say. Or, quite often, with a strange formality: “Thank you, driver!” My (Not So Very Little) Welsh Boys who love accompanying me into town on the Pulse
bus, like to chorus: “Diolch!” as they jump out onto the pavement - it’s Welsh for thank you, of course, though I’m not always sure the bus driver is aware of that...
Today I was invited to a special thank you event for those of us who keep our parish church open to all comers every Monday, Wednesday and Friday afternoon. The pleasure is, of course, all ours because we meet so many fascinating
people along the way - but it was a kind thought to have an event to recognise the time we give to providing a warm welcome (complete with tea, coffee and biscuits) to any visitors. We started off in Church but at 4 p.m. the plan was for us all to repair to
the Rectory for a celebratory glass of wine. Unfortunately, being needed at home by Mr B, I had to leave early before the Wine Fest, but I did have time, I said, for a cup of coffee. Except that Somebody Unknown appeared to have purloined the jar of coffee
from the Open Church Box. No problems, said Ian, who organises Open Church and proceeded to spoon coffee from another jar he found lurking on the refreshment table - unfortunately it was the ground coffee for the coffee machine so after just one sip, I found
my mouth full of grains. It was not a pleasant taste. But, as always, it is The Thought That Counts and at least my experience saved other coffee drinkers from a similar fate. I’m sure they would thank me, had they but known...
Sometimes a simple thank you seems inadequate, given the scale of the favour. Mr B and I are lucky indeed in our Support Army - the people who help us out in so many different ways. I especially appreciate
those who willingly give up their time to keep Mr B company so that I can have an outing now and then. I hope they know that I never, ever take their kindness for granted.
As a volunteer on the Summer Reading Challenge (only one more week to go until the Challenge ends until next summer) I am always impressed with the way our local library treats its volunteers. Every member of staff we meet makes a point of saying thanks,
impressing on us that they “couldn’t manage” without us, making us feel like honoured members of staff. There will be another thank you event at the library later this month when we will find out all the facts and figures about this year’s
Challenge - how many children registered, how many completed, how many books were borrowed over the course of the summer holiday. You know me, I just love the statistics. Reading the feedback comments from parents and from the children taking part also gives
me a warm glow; I particularly like the fact that so many of the comments from parents use the word “encouragement” to describe what we volunteers supplied to help their young’uns to complete the challenge. Mostly the children, to be fair,
are more inclined to give credit to the “smelly stickers” provided as rewards for reading the books.
Yesterday, in my two hour stint on the Summer
Reading Challenge desk, I lost count of the number of certificates and shiny medals I gave out to the children who had read all six books. Lots of happy faces, lots of Thank You’s - some shy, some cheery, all very, very happy.
One little lass seized her certificate and medal from me and proceeded to race across the library to find her grandmother. “I’ve won! I’ve won! I’ve won! I’ve
won!” she yelled, ecstatically, shattering the peace of the library.
Nobody seemed to mind. As for me, it was quite possibly the very best, most heartfelt
“thank you” I could possibly have hoped for.