Today’s good people all have to do with … food! And the act of providing it to those in need. This wasn’t intentional, but quite coincidental, and it wasn’t until I had written the last story and started my first round of proofreading that I realized the common theme!
A change in plans …
Melanie and Tyler Tapajna paid well in advance for their August wedding, securing a romantic lodge, a Disc Jockey, and a food truck caterer to serve dinner to about 150 family members and friends. They planned well ahead … but there was one thing they didn’t foresee when they planned this wedding late last year: a pandemic.
By early July, when they received a letter saying that the venue they had chosen for their wedding would not be open for business, due to the pandemic, the couple was left with a quandary. They could try to find another venue for their August 15th ceremony, or they could keep it simple, a very private ceremony. And that is what they did … they had a private ceremony outdoors at Melanie’s grandparents’ house, and their dog Redman filling in as best man. But … what to do with all the food they had already paid for? Well, these two young people have hearts of gold. Together, they decided to donate all the food to Laura’s Home — a Cleveland shelter for single women and mothers with children — and arranged to have their caterer deliver a meal worth about $2,000 to 135 people. But the couple wanted to be more ‘hands on’, wanted to actually help serve the food, too! So, after their “I do’s” had been spoken, they spent the rest of their wedding day, still in their wedding attire, serving up fried chicken, mac ‘n’ cheese, green beans, potato salad and chocolate cupcakes to all of the residents.But it doesn’t stop there. After the dinner, the Tapajnas didn’t go on a honeymoon, but they’ve already made plans for their first anniversary. According to Tyler …
“We’re going to give a donation to a charity every year to celebrate our wedding day. We didn’t do what we did for publicity, but we’re now hoping it inspires others to do the same.”
What an awesome way to begin their marriage, don’t you think?
And speaking of providing food for those in need … BATMAN is alive and well in Santiago, Chile, and is helping to feed the homeless! Yep, you heard me right … and I’ve even got pictures to prove it! Well, turns out it isn’t the real Batman, but rather a man who is doing his good deed in the best way possible … anonymously! He chooses not to reveal his identity, but as Batman, he goes through the streets of Santiago delivering food to the homeless, providing sustenance and light-hearted solace to those in need following months of lockdown in the Chilean capital.
The man, who wears a shiny batman suit complete with a coronavirus-ready sanitary facemask, delivers a few dozen plates of hot food to homeless people throughout the South American capital on a regular basis.
“Look around you, see if you can dedicate a little time, a little food, a little shelter, a word sometimes of encouragement to those who need it.”
In the aftermath of the storm …
Nearly two weeks ago, we got the tail end of the derecho storm … serious wind, hail, lightning, and torrential rain … but only for about an hour, and frankly our flowers were grateful for the dousing. But, in other places, the storm literally battered neighborhoods. In some areas of Iowa, for example, the storm didn’t let up for over twelve hours!
With electricity out, and thousands of homes, schools and businesses damaged, recovery begins. Willie Fairley is the owner of Willie Ray’s Q Shack in Cedar Rapids, Iowa, and he took it upon himself to do what he could to make sure his neighbors had at least one hot meal a day … at no cost! Says Willie …
“It’s terrible right now. You got a lot of people still without power. We’re just trying to do what we can as a company to make sure we did our part. Because if it was me home with nothing. I would want someone to at least be able to provide something for me.”
Nearly two weeks later, Willie Ray’s Q Shack is still handing out some 600 meals daily, but the community has stepped up to the plate to show their appreciation! A group that was inspired by his work is selling t-shirts to raise money for the restaurant and the Iowa Giving Crew. They also presented Fairley with a banner signed by people he’s helped over the last couple of weeks.
“People are stopping and giving little donations, and you know we’re gonna keep giving out food, probably for the next couple months more than likely. We’re just gonna keep taking care of people, doing whatever we can.”
So far, organizers have sold hundreds of shirts and $3,500 dollars.
I think that the thing I like best about these smaller acts of ‘goodness’ are that it shows us … we don’t have to be a millionaire to be a good people, but each of us has it in our power to help someone in small, yet important ways.