* A Small Request

During a recent trip to Kolkata, the morning flight was full. I sat next to a young gentleman who fell asleep even before takeoff. After some time, the stewardess woke him up to take his breakfast order. The young man woke up in a bad mood & declined to order anything, even though his office had booked his meal. That's when I asked him if I could have it instead. Perplexed, he agreed. I chose a box of almonds & mixed fruit juice. Upon landing, I took a cab to my hotel & gave the almonds & juice to the security guard, who was happy to receive them.

This story is neither about me nor about conducting a moral science class. But here is my request & do it ONLY if possible.

When staying in a hotel, collect complimentary items such as toiletries, slip-ons, sachets of milk powder, tea, sugar, & ketchup. Include toothbrushes, soap, vaseline, & etc., that are offered as part of a deal or as a buy-one-get-one-free offer. Additionally, if you have extra band-aids, towels, gloves, sanitary pads & napkins, put them all in a pouch to give to those in need. We can always find someone in our neighbourhood who could benefit from these items.

Instead of selling newspapers, magazines, books, plastic items, or bottles straight to the Kabadi Wala, consider giving them to those in need. They can in turn sell them to scrap dealers & benefit from the profits.

Before giving away unwanted clothes, consider following these tips. Take your old, faded saree to be over-dyed or printed, & have any torn clothes darned, button stitched or zipper fixed. Make sure to wash and iron all the items before giving them away. By doing this, not only do the giveaways look special but we also contribute to the livelihoods of skilled workers.

Lastly, needless to say, let the giving be graceful.

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