I have a lot to be thankful for. Quite a lot, and I would like to take this opportunity to be grateful for all the people who have been so good to me over the years. The other day, I met with an old friend from college for lunch to help her out with a enterprise that she is planning to get into it. She has no idea how to go about it and needed some perspective. So I sat down with her and shared everything I knew. It must’ve been a lot and I promised her to send her a whole bunch of other stuff as a follow-up and she was talking about payment, and honestly, I didn’t think of it at all.
“Let’s talk about payment later,” I said. “Let’s get this project off the ground and when things are running smoothly, if you feel the need to pay me, then do so at your own convenience. I’m doing this because we are friends. You need help and I can help. That’s it.”
It sounds cheesy and so goodie-goodie but I meant it. She’s not really a close friend; I haven’t seen her in years. I didn’t even know that she was abroad for the past four years. She has a nice idea, though, and there are many avenues where I think I can help. So I’ll help.
Truth of the matter is, I’m merely paying it forward. I have been so blessed in my life that people have been unbelievably good to me. In fact, I am in very good relations with people who, I discovered, have a reputation of being difficult people. I didn’t know about this at all. I work with them, we have a great time, we enjoy each other’s company, and we work well together. I find out later on, from other sources, that they did this thing and that thing and that they are not really nice people.
“But they are nice to me,” I say.
“Everyone is nice to you, Wanggo,” my friends tell me.
I don’t know what it is, really, but it is true. And because of that, it is very easy for me to be generous and kind. It’s very easy for me to give and give because people are generally much nicer to me and I always manage to deal with a lot of good and kind people. So I react the same way to the world. What I get, I put out.
I have two friends who I hung out with a lot before and I love them to bits but they can be quite bitchy and demanding sometimes. They always were bothered that when we would go and eat out, I would be treated better than they would by the service crew. So when they have demands, they always would course it through me because it seemed I got better results.
Another funny story was when my sister was preparing to leave for America and she had to get all her paperwork done. My sister is a lovely and charming person and people love her immediately as well, but maybe because of the stress, she was throwing off a different kind of energy. She had some paper work to be signed at the city hall and the lady there gave her the run around, sent her all over the place and didn’t sign the papers. She went home exhausted, angry, and frustrated. I had a free day so I offered to handle it for her. My sister didn’t want to subject me to that but let me do it because she still had so much to do and she might explode if they did it to her again.
The next day, I went to the city hall and I approached the lady and I asked her if this was where I had these signed. For some reason, the lady and I got to talking and after she had signed, she told me the next step was to get some other form and she then brought me into her office and helped me find the form. I filled it up, passed it to her, and she gave me the next set of paper work, completing it for my sister.
I came home and she was shocked. “Maybe it was a different lady,” I said. I described her and my sister was, like, “No! That’s her!”
People have been very nice to me. People have been good to me. And because of that, I feel like I have to be nice and good to people too. It is a cycle that shouldn’t break otherwise, I don’t know, I’d be ungrateful or something.
Hell, when I got sick the second time and things got bad, and it looked like I wouldn’t have the funds to pay for my hospital bills, my friends went behind my back and started collecting money and people I didn’t even know too well gave and it really helped shoulder the expenses. It didn’t pay for everything but it made it manageable. That’s amazing to me. These people went out of their way to save my life. My life.
There’s no other way about it. This is why I try to be good. This is why I try to be pleasant and nice.
People have been good to me. So I have to be good back.