Geraldine was a reserved old lady who sold flowers on the street every day. She endured insults from people who didn't like her flowers and from people who generally looked down on her. But one day, consistent acts of kindness from a stranger culminated in a better life for her.
Geraldine was a 60-year-old woman who loved gardening. She began selling her flowers on the street every day to try and make more money. When she stopped people on the road to try and sell her flowers to them, they often ridiculed them for not looking like expensive designer bouquets.
Even worse, Geraldine would often be ridiculed by people who thought she was too old to be starting a business. "Why would an old hag like you expect people to buy her flowers?" People laughed as they walked past. This left Geraldine feeling defeated, but she never gave up on trying to sell her flowers every day.
Geraldine was an old woman who sold flowers on the street. | Source: Getty Images
One young woman, Kelsey, saw Geraldine every day and always thought she was a lovely lady. Kelsey worked at the cafe near where Geraldine sold her flowers. She spent her lunchtimes with Geraldine every day and often bought her flowers. "I think your flowers are unique, and they have a beautiful homey feel," Kelsey often said.
"I appreciate you, darling; you are always so kind to me," Geraldine smiled.
But Kelsey's colleagues found it ridiculous that she spent so much time with Geraldine. "Are you so desperate for friends that you make friends with an old lady who sells boring flowers?" they snickered. Kelsey ignored their jabs and continued to spend time with Geraldine whenever she could.
One evening, Kelsey was in charge of closing up the cafe. The manager decided to close early because a big thunderstorm was on its way. While the storm raged on and Kelsey tidied up and started putting the chairs up, she spotted Geraldine sitting outside in the shower.
Geraldine set up her sidewalk flower shop close to a cafe. | Source: Shutterstock
She couldn't believe that Geraldine was getting rained on and didn't move. She ran out with an umbrella to try and shield herself from the rain. "Mrs. Mendez! What are you doing out in the rain?" she shouted. "Can't you go home or ask someone to fetch you?"
"My dear, please go back inside; I don't want you to get rained on!" she replied.
"No, please come into the cafe for a few hours and get warm," Kelsey begged.
"Kelsey, I can't leave; you don't understand. I need to make money today," Geraldine cried.
Kelsey begged Geraldine to come into the cafe until she reluctantly agreed. She brought her into the kitchen and gave her a blanket, and then she quickly prepared chicken soup to get her feeling warm again. "Mrs. Mendez, please tell me why you are so desperate that you need to sit in the rain?" Kelsey asked.
Before she could answer, Geraldine broke down in tears and took a while to calm down. When she was calmer, Kelsey asked again. "Please tell me why you don't have anyone to take care of you."
One day there was a big thunderstorm in town and Geraldine was sitting outside. | Source: Shutterstock
"If my son were healthy, he would be taking care of me," Geraldine cried. "He has surgery due in a week, and I still haven't been able to gather the money to pay for it. I've been sitting here every day hoping that people would buy my flowers more so that I can make the money he needs...If he doesn't have the surgery, he won't make it."
Kelsey could not believe that this poor old lady was going through this nightmare. She wanted to help but had no idea what to do.
While they were sitting together, Kelsey's manager came back to confirm that the cafe was locked. "Kelsey, what is going on here?" he asked. "Why are the lights still on, and why is there an old lady in my kitchen?"
Kelsey tried to explain what was going on, but the manager didn't listen. "Get her out of here right now, and I'll be fining you for this transgression!" he shouted.
Kelsey was tidying up and preparing to close the restaurant when she saw Geraldine sitting outside. | Source: Shutterstock
"I understand, sir; I'll get her out," she said.
Kelsey spent the entire night thinking about Geraldine and her problems. She needed to help her friend, but she had no idea how to. She tossed and turned all night, and as soon as morning came, she prepared for work as expected.
As she walked towards the cafe, she spotted Geraldine and handed her an envelope full of money. "Kelsey, what is going on? Why are you offering me this?" Geraldine asked.
"Mrs. Mendez, I need you to take this money I'm offering you. Please use it to pay for your son's surgery," Kelsey said.
"No darling, I can't. There's no way," Geraldine cried.
"This is money I was saving to take my mother to the ocean. She was ill, and I wanted her to have one beautiful day. Unfortunately, she died too soon, and I couldn't take her to the ocean," Kelsey said.
Kelsey worked at the cafe near where Geraldine sold her flowers. | Source: Shutterstock
"But why didn't you spend the money on yourself?" Geraldine asked.
"I couldn't bring myself to touch it. But when you told me about your story yesterday, I knew what I had to do. Please use it for your son's surgery," Kelsey said.
Geraldine rushed to pay the hospital, and her son underwent surgery that night. He recovered over a few weeks in the hospital.
"My dear son, the doctors said you'd be okay!" Geraldine told him.
"It's all thanks to you mom, you saved my life," he said.
"No, it's not all me. This kind young lady, Kelsey, gave me the money to pay for your surgery," she replied.
"I'd love to meet her and thank her in person," he said.
As soon as Mike got out of the hospital, he went to the cafe Kelsey worked at to thank her. "I just want to say I appreciate you for doing this for my mom and saving my life," he said
Kelsey met with Geraldine's son for coffee but later realized they really liked each other | Source: Shutterstock
"You’re welcome! Your mom is a wonderful woman, and she worked tirelessly to make sure you got healthy again. I'm glad I could help," she said.
The pair spoke for hours over coffee and carrot cake. They developed such a close bond that a year later, they started dating. They developed deeper feelings for each other as they continued dating, and they got married after dating for three years. Geraldine's flowers were the centerpieces at the wedding.
What can we learn from this story?
Please share this story with your friends; it might inspire people to share their own stories or help someone else.
If you enjoyed this story, you might like this one about an older woman who found a letter written by her best friend 46 years ago, but her husband forbade her to read it.
This account is inspired by our reader's story and written by a professional writer. Any resemblance to actual names or locations is purely coincidental. All images are for illustration purposes only. Share your story with us; maybe it will change someone's life. If you would like to share your story, please send it to firstname.lastname@example.org.