A Very Special Valentine

In late November, on my way home to London, Ontario from Australia, I was passing through the bus depot in Banff, Alberta.   I mentioned to a ticket agent that I had driven buses for “Brewsters” in the late 80′s.  She called over the supervisor and after a brief chat, I was offered my old job driving tour buses in the Canadian Rockies.   For the time being, I’m driving a regional transit bus between Banff and Canmore.
Though the mountains are beautiful, the back and forth gets tedious.  To make it more interesting, I’ve made it a point to learn the names of my regular riders.
Everyday on an early morning run to Banff, a boy gets on the bus with his brother and sister to go to school.  He is very shy, will not look at me, and has never spoken to me.  Regardless, every morning I say hello to him by name.   This Valentines Day he got on the bus, his eyes looking elsewhere, and handed me a home-made Valentine.
Surprised and humbled, I drove down the Trans-Canada Highway with tears in my eyes and a prayer of gratitude in my heart for hidden graces.
I put it on my fridge.

Categories Blog Post | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , | Posted on February 14, 2013

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  1. by Marg

    On February 15, 2013


  2. by Tim

    On February 15, 2013

    That’s a great story. You never know the powerful affect you can have on others even when the message coming back seems weak.

  3. by Patrick O'Connor

    On February 15, 2013

    Exactly, I had no idea whatsoever that I was on this young man’s radar. But there you go! It was a truly humbling experience, one I’ll never forget.

  4. by Linda

    On February 15, 2013

    What a great story! I think we often make an impact when we least expect to. It is so much the little things that make a big difference!

  5. by Lara

    On February 15, 2013

    Love this Patrick. One should never underestimate their ability to impact the life of another…even with something as simple as a smile or a friendly greeting.

  6. by Patrick

    On February 15, 2013

    Thank you Lara. You know this well, by your own work and life.

  7. by Patrick O'Connor

    On February 16, 2013

    Thank you Linda. In the busyness of life we’re not often conscious of the many and hidden connections around us.

  8. by Marg

    On February 17, 2013

    Love the valentine, thats worth keeping for a life time.

  9. by Bus Boy

    On February 25, 2013

    I am the brother of the boy who gave this valentine, he is autistic and loves to be festive and do things according to the seasons, he was so excited that day before we got on the bus, he loves to ride in and this was his way of saying thank you. On behalf of him, I say thanks for the story, I showed this to him and he loved it!

  10. by Patrick O'Connor

    On February 25, 2013

    Thank you. I’m glad your brother liked the story. He’s a special boy indeed, a pure heart has he. It’s been great to drive you and your brother on the bus. :)

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