What’s the Nicest Thing a Stranger Has Ever Done for You?

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Last week, our office received something in the mail that took our breaths away. It was a delicate, 24K gold necklace that said “blessed” in teeny-tiny script, and we were told that we could give it away in a contest on our website (

But what kind of contest? We started thinking about what it means to be blessed. The necklace was meant to remind the wearer when she gazes into the mirror of all the wonderful things in her life instead of focusing on the negative, as we so often do. We decided that the contest to make people think of the blessings that are so often forgotten.

“What’s the nicest thing a stranger has ever done for you?” we asked.  Whoever gives us our favorite answer will become a finalist, and then users can pick the number one story for the winner.

The contest just went up a few days ago, but we’ve gotten some really funny, heart-warming responses that I wanted to share:

Sasha: “I was traveling in Naples, Italy by myself. I had plans to meet some friends in Capri, and I was in a cab trying to get to the ferry, When we arrived, a policeman told us that the ferries would be shut down until late at night, due to an accident. I was really distressed—I didn’t speak the language and had no idea where to go, and it was already dark. The friendly cab driver wound up taking me out to dinner with his wife and son (who was learning English) at a little local place, and afterwards he took me back to the ferry. It’s one of my favorite memories of the trip.”

Irene: “About a year ago, my friend and I had tickets to a Yankees home game. Our seats were in the nosebleed section, but we were pretty excited to go anyway. We didn’t have many opportunities to go to games, and we’re big Yankees fans. Heading to the stadium that day, we were approached by a young man and his girlfriend. He tapped me on the shoulder and asked if we had tickets. We said we had seats, but that they were pretty bad. He shrugged his shoulders, handed us two tickets, and just said “Here.” Turns out he had two free tickets on right field! It was one of the best games I’ve ever watched!”

Vivian: “When I was a poor student, I went window-shopping at a consignment vintage store and tried on a pair of Michael Kors strappy sandals that were a perfect fit on me … except for the price tag. I was in love but knew I couldn’t afford them. As I was leaving, the owner called me back and told me he’d give it to me for as much as my student budget could afford. I still remember his generosity that day and think of his kindness every time I wear those shoes.”

Linda: “I lost my wallet and was devastated. It was a pretty expensive name brand wallet, and had all my credit cards and forms of ID in it. Two weeks pass by and I get a package in the mail. It turns out to be my wallet! A perfect stranger picked up my wallet from a cab (where I must have dropped it) and decided to mail it back to me. Nothing was stolen and she even included a personal note.”

Cat: “It was a hot summer day, and I had just gotten off the highway in a less-nice part of town, when my car suddenly died. I was stuck in the middle of the ramp, and although I put my hazards on, cars kept zooming up to my fender and honking. A homeless guy under the overpass saw me, and walked up to my car, grinned, and said, “Don’t worry!” and proceeded to stand behind my car, and direct other cars around mine with his cardboard sign for the next twenty minutes in the blazing sun, until AAA showed up.”

Daphne: “After back-packing in Spain, I was at the airport checking in for my flight back to NY when an airline rep informs me that my flight was fully booked and that I’d have to stay the night in Madrid to catch the next flight in the AM … Not even a second before I was about to unleash the rage on this messenger of bad news, she proceeds to whip out $600 Euros. She says (In broken English) “For your troubles, please accept this as a token of our apologies. We will also put you in a 5-star hotel for the night. A shuttle is waiting for you outside to take you to your hotel. We’ll see you in the morning for your flight back to NY. Again, on behalf of Iberian, our sincerest apologies.” First thing that popped in my head, shopping spree! After a full day of shopping, I held my own little fashion show in my 5-star hotel room that night! Thanks for the memories, Iberian Airlines! And thanks for the dresses, shoes, and bags!

By the way, the contest is here if you have a great story too.


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