Posted by Gerry - 17 February 2011
Every so often someone turns up in our lives who makes a deep and lasting impression.
Many years ago I was driving through Dorset on the way to Cornwall with a friend. The roads were quiet and we pulled up at a mini roundabout to allow a very old car to pass in front of us.
As the car passed, an elderly lady passenger turned and gave us the most exquisite smile. She was, in nature's purest and most guileless way, beautiful.
My friend and I were so overwhelmed by her smile that we both exclaimed how beautiful she was. To this day we remember that moment in time and her wonderful smile.
A young man, probably in his teens, was fundraising for the blind. He told me that every day in the UK, over 100 people start to lose their sight. He was particularly concerned about young people in the area who were blind and isolated. Action for Blind People offers support to those in great need.
As I was in a hurry I didn't have time to ask him if he had someone in his family, or a friend, who had been affected. But from the way he spoke, I imagine he had.
When something is important to someone, you feel it not only from their message, but also their passion. This was obviously so important to him.
Through all the busy-ness of that day, I reflected on what it must be like to suddenly have no sight, to not see the spring flowers, peoples' faces, where you were walking, what lay ahead. Our sight forms such a huge chunk of our perception. To not see would be a monumental loss.
And I also remembered the beautiful smile from long ago that communicated so much. I would have missed that moment and memory.
In my own small way I wanted to help the people that the young man represented and promised to put details of the charity he so ardently promoted on this blog in the hope that you might also be moved enough to help.