Paying It Forward

Mark & Yoo-Mi
This is for your friend w/ metastatic cancer. Just paying it forward for all that you’ve done for me, directly and indirectly through offering your space for CF service events.
Wish I could help more, but I’m not rich (yet?).

I found this note today, written on the back of a printout of a Yahoo! Maps page indicating the location of 2247 Market St San Francisco, CA 94114-1612, printed on 12/10/04. Wrapped inside the folds of this sheet were 5 brand new $20 bills. The paper packet was left on one of our bookshelves, beside a candle lantern that I had made, like an offering placed on an alter. My eye caught it this afternoon as I was looking around at the little things that needed to be done before Mark and I leave for South India this Friday. I approached it anticipating to find yet another piece of paper left behind (and to be thrown away) after one of the many events we had here two weekends ago. I folded the contents back up, and left it on the kitchen counter, a more prominent place, to show Mark when he got home.

A few minutes later, my friend Allyson, the intended recipient of this anonymous act of generosity, called to ask if we were accepting donations for the victims of the devastating tsunamis in South India.

Whoever left this gift must have been either at the CharityFocus Tiger Team meeting or at the Hear the Homeless Basic Needs event that were held at our space on Saturday and Sunday, December 18 and 19, 2004. The familiar “Smile” card was placed on top of the bills. In writing this post, and reading the message once again, I noticed the distinctive way the paper was folded. A big clue. But I really don’t want to know who.

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