(If there's a v similar thread, I'll gladly close this one or merge it into an existing one; just lemme know.) As the title asks, have you ever been (pleasantly) surprised by how generous and kind people can be? 2007 was particularly rough for me and my family, and 2008 isn't starting off so great-- and through it all, I've been shown amazing kindness and big-heartedness by people that I wouldn't have expected it from. I don't mean to discount them. Sigh, lemme try to clarify. Since becoming a member of MR, I've grown closer to some members and that includes not just email or IM off of MR, but even talking on the phone and meeting in person and whatnot. Some, I've yet to have the honor of the latter two, but still, you get the picture. With one particular incident, someone drove very far out of their way to help me move out of a not-so-great situation. And there have been other ways that people have shown me such caring. I just can't list every damned example! I guess, I'm a bit cynical-- I've seen and experienced some nasty people in my life (as, unfortunately, I'm sure many of you have) and it's so easy for me to discount people as selfish, greedy bastards. But then there are these inexplicable people and moments that challenge me-- to take a step back and to re-evaluate these people in my life. To realize that there are people who can be and do good things. That we humans, are not always lousy. And to keep in mind that what may not be so significant or burdensome to one person, can make a huge impact to someone else. Someone who really needed that sign of humanity. Sorry, guess I'm in a bit of a reflective and sappy mood.