I had a very strange evening yesterday.
I’m involved with organising an event that starts tomorrow (StreetReach Lisburn, if you’re curious — more to follow on that), and we had our final committee meeting last night. The pair of astonishing ear infections that blighted my Easter weekend have left me unable to drive until balance and spatial awareness are back to normal, so I was waiting on a colleague for a lift home.
He was providing a ride for another friend, let’s call him Al, who informed us that he had a mission to complete before we went home.
Al had been out walking earlier in the day, and being caught short had ducked down a side road into a field where he had come across a great pile of magazines of a certain type. Being a conscientious fellow, Al felt it wasn’t right to leave these publications where an unsuspecting innocent might stumble across them, so took us to load them all up into the back of the car for disposal.
That was the easy part. How would you dispose of a boot-load of suspect literature at ten o’clock at night, in an environmentally and socially responsible way? Could we find a paper recycling point? Of course not.
So there’s us in the car park of a large shopping centre, distributing piles of coloured paper between the various already-full bins, under the watchful electronic eyes of the security cameras. I’m sure we looked quite suspicious.
Al’s straightforward response to what he viewed as a problem was humbling. There’s a lot to be said for a man who sees something wrong and then, without thinking twice, goes and does what he can to put it right. More power to him, as they say.