Thursday, June 15, 2017

The Kindness Diaries

Earlier this spring, our daughters discovered The Kindness Diaries as they scrolled through recommended show selections on Netflix. For readers who may be unfamiliar with this adventurous documentary, here is a description of the series:

"Host Leon Logothetis travels the world with only a vintage motorbike and the kindness of strangers, which he pays back in unexpected, inspiring ways."

As we watched each excursion, I was inspired to incorporate his vision in various ways while traveling with our family this summer. I then decided to share my thoughts in this blog post, hoping to encourage other families and even Scout troops to do the same.

When planning a vacation or road trip, people may set aside a discretionary budget for souvenirs. What if your family or Scout troop decided not to buy a t-shirt, cinch sack, fridge magnet, or postcard from the gift shop at your destination, but instead, chose to spend this money to brighten someone's day or make a stranger more comfortable?

Here are some pocketbook-friendly ideas:
Buy someone a cup of coffee
Deliver a doughnut to an unsuspecting recipient
Treat a stranger to lunch
Fill a person's tank with gas
Cover another's campsite costs for a night
Pool your money and purchase a blanket for a homeless person

*If the timing and circumstances are right, consider learning more about the person's story.

As I watched Leon travel around the world, my thoughts drifted to Thinking Day. If your troop is making plans for their Thinking Day booth, host an overnight for the girls and watch an episode or two of this series for ideas and inspiration on a featured destination. While the show is rated TV-G, I would recommend adults preview the show before viewing with children and asses the appropriateness for your kiddos.  Side note:  If your troop chooses to learn more about Uganda, consider watching Queen Of Katwe (rated PG). If the girls wish to discover more about India, I recommend Million Dollar Arm (also rated PG).  Both are great stories that provide a glimpse of the respective countries and cultures. Again, I recommend adults preview these movies before showing them to the Scouts.

Whether you're heading across the country, setting out on a short road trip, or driving across town to the local pool this summer, remember Leon and his quest. With small acts of kindness, we can make this world a better place. As always, thank you for reading.

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