Finally, some, good news, the good will of the people who’d, set up this shop, with the wills to help those who lost their support from their own families, a social enterprise, off of the Newspapers, translated…
The bagel shop “Good Trees Better Fruits” in Pingzhen, Taoyuan, the founders, the married couple Huang and Chen, through the bagels that they sold, they’d connected with the younger generations of fragile families, hoping their cares and concerns can make them feel more encouraged and loved, to help them find a way to show off their values of life; all the workers, the manager, the pastry chef of the shop are all under age thirty, they’d turned the shop into their home away from home, and found their point to begin again in their own separate, lives.
The bagels of the shop were on display, from the selecting of the ingredients, the kneading of the dough, the fermenting of the dough, the baking, the setting the dough to better appearances, every step to make the bagels are thoroughly thought and planned out.
Huang’s belief was using the bagels, to turn the stories of life of his team of employees, into the blessing for someone else. And now, the couple not only owned and operated the bagel shop, they’d also started up a foundation, “The Tree of Life Leadership Organization of Taoyuan”, to help the younger generations to start up their own businesses, to help them get employment.
Recalling how back in 2019, they’d started from the tiny warehouse space as a shop, Chen recalled, how they’d lacked the funding, no connections, let alone, a shopfront, and every day, he’d worried of not getting what he’d made sold completely; thankfully due to the online business means, along with how the reputation of the shop is being set up, they’d gone against the flow, and made their business a success.
The store manager, Huang, due to problems in his family was forced to separate from his own parents, and at his worst, he’d not had enough money to pay for his rent, his utilities, and bought the nearing expiration date items as food. Another young store manager, Lai, her parents were addicts, in and out of prison a lot, with nobody she could rely on after her grandmother passed away. There were also the baker who’d served five years in prison due to gang relations, the mother of three who’d lacked the self-confidence, the baker who’d started on his own since before age twenty, they’d all found their brand new start in life at “Good Trees, Better Fruits”.
And so, this is the heart of this young couple, who saw a need of the younger generations, and gave them a place to work, to use their own abilities to make a living for themselves, and this shop offered its employees a brand new start on life, gave them another chance to begin anew in their own separate lives.
This is a good shop, with the beliefs of operations in helping others find their way!
This man, found his own friend’s life more important than his own active arrest warrant, and made the right judgment call, how this is a step toward the right direction in this man’s life, off of the Front Page Sections, translated…
A man, Pan from Kaohsiung awhile ago, went with his friend, Chang to the mountains to pick the herbs used in traditional Chinese medicine, and on the third day, Chang felt sick, and started defecating blood; Pan was worried that his friend might die in the mountains, risked his identity of being a criminal with an active arrest warrant on him being found out, went down the mountains, and reported his friend’s conditions to the police, then, led the police and the fire department up the mountains to save his own friend’s life. As he was taken into custody, he’d stated, “Even though now I’m arrested for my drug charges, but at least, I still have my conscience intact.”
The sixty-four year-old Pan had been friends with Chang for thirty, forty years, the two went to the Five Creeks Mountain regions of Taoyuan District in Kaohsiung to pick the Chinese herbal medicines on the twenty-sixth of this month. At around noon of the twenty-eighth, Chang suddenly fell ill, and started defecating blood, although he’d not ruled it out as his stomach bleeding, but, worried, that if he didn’t get sent to the hospitals, he may be in life-threatening danger, and that was when Pan decided to go down the mountains to get him the help he needed.
Pan had an active arrest warrant on illegal substances on him at the beginning of March, he knew, that if he’d rushed to the substations to call for help for his friend, and filled out the forms, his status of being a criminal might get found out, but, as he’d arrived to the Meishan Substation to report, he’d still used his real identity, and the local police immediately found, that he had an active arrest warrant signed by the Chiaotou D.A.’s Office. Pan told the officers, that his friend’s life is in danger that he wasn’t going to run.
The police then contacted the local fire department, the Yushan National Park management, the Seventh local safety squad, and the officials set up a search and rescue team, and Pan led them to his friend, and they were able to find Chang on the twenty-ninth, and lifted him off the mountains, got him the help he needed, he is in the hospital for an extended stay.
And so, this man realized, that his friend’s life was more important than the fact that he had an active arrest warrant, that’s why he’d gone to the police station, to get help for his friend who’d fallen ill in the mountains, and his risking getting caught (which he was!), was what saved his friend, and, that counts for something, and I’m sure, that after he served his time, he will, turn over that new leaf, and leave his criminal pasts behind him for good.
Repeated in that vicious cycle of his own misbehaviors, led him down this path of, no return, and now finally, as he sits in his cell, he’d, realized what he’d done, and what he can do, to turn his own life, around, translated…
For Most, This is a Hopeless Sort of Life……………
My rebirth from the flames, started from owing two hundred million dollars, the ability to introspect, to admit to what I’d done was wrong, was from my twelve years’ sentence in prison. For most, this is a life without the chances, but to me, it’s, a brand new, beautiful, beginning, because, I’m now able to use my mindset of learning for life, to, turn the bottom half of my own life, around.
Walking on That, Right Path, Finally
Back when I was too young to know any better, I’d thought, that putting my fist out to help a friend, is the true meaning of giving them the support they were looking for, and yet, what I got were, the conflicts of the fights I’d gotten in, at age twenty, I’d, faced my very first, prison sentence, being taken into, custody. Everybody told, that the longer you get locked up in prison, the more badass you’d, become, that it’s the path, of becoming a gangster, so, the very first time I got stuck in a cage, I just wanted to, make more friends, to expand my connections. And surely, I’d not changed a bit after I’d made bail, and, I’d, hit the walls, soon enough, and only, stayed out of prison, for one short, year’s time.
The second time I got taken into custody, I’d met a white collar criminal, the worst step I’d, ever taken, and became, a con artist, got on that path of, no return. The second time I’d made bail, I went into business with a friend, and, wrote the scripts, used the cons, to get my very first bucket of gold in life, ever since, I’d, gotten lost in the nightlife, took up the habits of gambling, and, started, squandering everything away to soon, which was a proof of, traveling down the wrong road, it’ll, catch up to you eventually.
illustration from UDN.com
By age twenty-five, I’d faced my third, two years’ worth of prison sentence, being righteous toward my friends, I’d, taken all the blames, and in return, all my friends, they’d, deserted me. My wife went into labor when I was held in custody, and she was too distressed and had postpartum depression, and in the end, my only source of strength was my parents’ never giving up on me, which was, the start of, me, waking up, and turning my life, around. I’d started, making friends with books, started getting into the habits of reading, to change my own heart, and understood the meanings of, “helping others” and the meanings of “helping another is helping ourselves”. My own experiences made me reached out to my fellow inmates, hoping they don’t travel down this same wrong path I had, to improve themselves, for those around them.
The two years’ prison terms, I’d, come to understand, that the justice system is maxed out in giving me my second chances, that every time I returned back to the society, I’d, strayed, farther from I did before, that I may not have the opportunity to get out, on good behaviors again; and, maybe, it’s going to take me more years to finally appreciate being able to feel the love from my parents, to find the blessings of sharing a meal with my wife and children. And yet, in my time of serving prison, I was, blessed by heavens above, as I was told, that I was allowed to make bail a third time, I’d sworn, that in the time I’m serving, I shall, stay away from the bad, and, start walking out, a better path of life for myself.
The Encouragements to Myself, “It Takes Ten Years to Make a Perfectly Sharpened Sword”
After I’d made bail, I’d, still, gathered with those friends, but without, the bad influences, sharing only the ideals, and I’d, come to understand, how those friends’ not, deserting me was, too precious to, come by. As my case was still pending, I’d discussed with a friend on the future direction of my own life, “We’ll try it with you.” with their supports I’d, become, an entrepreneur. And, as I got totally immersed in what I was doing, I fell, in love, and in the process, I’d come to understand the meaning of “there’s a house of gold in every book”, the books I’d read in prison became quite useful in business, I’d started up from the fundamentals, and because of how my partners and I were on the same page, in only three short years, we’d, made a “good grade”. I’m more than grateful to my friends’ trusts in me, from the team of five originally, squatted inside that compressed, tiny office, and now, we’d, expanded to more than thirty employees.
During the time of our startup, I’d worked in the merchandising department, and, used the knowledge I’d read up on in the books from prison, to lower the costs and to barter with the providers, but, being a con artist myself, I got, conned, and, I’d originally wanted to, shoulder the money I’d lost for the firm, but, my partners denied my request to, and said, that the company will pay up the total. And in the end, the providers were touched by my story of turning my own life around, and, refunded the amount we’d lost back to us.
We all eventually, pay for our own, mistakes. My trial dragged out for three full years, as I’d gotten that serving sentence to prison, I’d felt upset, but I’d not, gone back on that promise I’d made three years ago when I’d made bail then, and my families saw how hard I’d, tried to work to turn my life around too.
And to this very day, whenever I get anxious, upset, or agitated, I’d still told myself, “it takes ten years to sharpen that sword”, we needed to trim the rough edges of our own character off, to better our own, abilities too, and I’d understood the true meaning of “only when you change for the better, the meanings of you becoming a man showed.”
still serving his time…
I am, a textbook example, although I’d still caused myself to get stuck, but I hope, that the life experiences of this decade of life from my twenties to my thirties, can help light the way for all those who are currently lost at the crossroads of their own, lives.
And so, this is the man’s, tracing the wrong steps he’d taken in his own life thus far, and as he’s serving his current prison term (hopefully his very last one!), he’d, realized the wrong steps he’d taken thus far, and, decided to make the changes, to make sure he doesn’t, go down the wrong roads in his own life again, and hopefully, that will to change in him, will be enough, to keep him from straying again.
The act of kindness, from a customer, who saw how hard hit the restaurant industry had been during this past year of the outbreaks, and gave the workers, a boost of, hope that they’re, in dire need of, it’s her heart that’s touched the restaurant workers, more than the amount she’d packed into the red envelope to give to them I’m sure, translated…
My former employer is considered one of the hardest hit under the epidemic, after May of last, it’d, gone toward the bottom of operations, all the way to the end of year, and finally, as the guests returned, the epidemic started, growing again, those of us who worked in the restaurants aren’t afraid of getting too busy with work, unafraid of hard work, only worried, that our service skills aren’t, put to, good use.
leaving the huge tip…
Watching the news, and, I’d started, worrying over my former coworkers, that day, I’d chatted with a head chef, and he’d told me, that currently, the reservations are, bipolarized, in the cities and counties where there’s a higher number of cases of confirmed contractions, there are only, a handful of reservations, and the primary means of making the money turned into takeout or deliveries, or, the frozen dishes sent to the customers’ homes, while for the other regions, the restaurant made sure of the safety protective measures of cleanliness, and take advantage of the time we have to dine out together.
He’d told me, that the previous evening, he’d waited on a returning customer, who’d dined in as usual, and, he’d served the guest, and, as the man paid for the tab, he’d, given the server a red envelope, told him, “I’d heard that you guys won’t get any year-end bonuses, this is my blessing, and something extra for you guys, you must, take it!”
The tiny act of kindness from a frequent customer, sent that surge of warmth throughout the entire restaurant, the restaurant became, not just a place to gather to eat to make good memories in, we’re, very grateful for this beautiful, and wise customer, who’d, given us that warmth of blessings in the cold of winter.
And so, this just showed, how the acts of kindness can touch someone so deeply, and we’re, especially in need of these encounters in our lives, as the epidemic still rolls, and, there’s still no end in sight, and, if we can’t give each other the tiniest sparks of hope, then, we’d all be, living in the darkness of this trying time.
These are the acts of kindness, that we all need to see more of these days, from strangers, who saw a need, and provided the need to others, translated…
My father, who’s over ninety years of age, due to how his legs are no longer as agile anymore, at the start of the year, he’d started walking with a cane to help him, and, his areas of activities became, limited greatly.
A few days ago, I’d gone back to my parents without any plans, as I’d turned into the alley where they live, I saw my father sat down on the chair, set by the side of the front door of someone else’s home. As I’d asked, I’d learned, that my father was out walking a bit for exercises, as he returned, he’d felt tired in his legs, that’s why he’d sat down for a short rest, pops also told me, that the neighbor of this house was quite kind, every time he’d seen them, other than greeting him kindly, they’d also told him, that if he gets tired from walking, he is to sit down by the chair they put out by their front door to rest a bit.
the cultures of tea-offerings from the olden days…
In the earlier eras of Taiwan, in the less densely population areas counties, there would be those with kindness in their hearts, that sat up the tea kettles out by their own doors, to help the passersby, the travelers from afar, to take a breather, to have some replenishments of fluids they needs, so they have the energies to keep going to wherever it is they’re getting to, which turned into a culture of “tea offerings”. And now, my father’s neighbors kind act of “seat offering”, shared the same effects of kindness, and it’d, touched me very much.
A chair that’s, set up by the side of the door, allowing the elderly in the neighborhood, who are no longer agile enough to walk all the way home, to sit and rest a bit, then to keep going, this tiny act of kindness, showed the compassions of the homeowner. Because of the reinforced actions of the neighbors, I’d felt, that this road home was, more beautiful than ever before.
And so, this, is the kindness of stranger to you, the neighbors close to where your father lives saw that there’s a need for your father to sit and rest a bit, and, provide a chair out by the front doors of their home, and it’s this act of kindness, that may not be that much, that’s, touched you and those who will come and sit in the chair as they needed the rest.
The surgical teams of VMH Taipei held a press conference, that they’d finished the harvesting of a child of a year and three months, only 9.8 kilograms kidneys that took twenty surgeons, eighteen hours, made the record for the youngest and lightest in weight organ donor in the country’s history, and the record of transplanting both kidneys to the recipients.
The young life didn’t get a chance to grow up, but it’d helped the four-year-old young girl, Hsu, and the nine-year-old girl, Hsu to not be tried by the need for dialyses during their lifetimes, and a year after the surgeries, the two young girls came forth, active.
It’s hard to imagine, how these two young girls had been battling life and death just last year, the infant girl, Lee, three days after her birth, had a ruptured stomach, which caused her to go into shock from the sepsis, causing her kidneys to lose the functions, and she’s at risk of needing dialysis for the rest of her life, she’s the youngest child in the country’s record for needing long-term dialysis in the country; while the other young girl, Hsu, due to her congenital heart condition, which caused her kidney to fail, causing her to develop a progressive kidney disease, had been undergoing dialysis for three years to date. The head of pediatric department of Taipei V.M.H. Chang stated, that the two children had been undergoing dialysis long-term, and can only maintain the basics of their bodily functions, are both delayed in growth, that kidney transplant was the only way to save their, lives.
“Waiting for a kidney, and transplanting”, it’s another serious trial. The head pediatric surgeon of Taipei V.M.H., Tsai told, that there are, not enough young recipient of donor kidneys, and the harvesting and implanting surgeries are, especially difficult to perform, and there are the higher risks of complications compared to the adults, with a low success rate; and the children are smaller in size, their body can’t provide the needs of the adult donors’.
Three weeks after the transplant, Hsu the young girl was successfully discharged from the hospitals, but, the other young girl, Lee, due to her frequent blood transfusions, it’d caused her immune system to develop the antigens, and the hospital took various methods of treatment measures, after twelve plasma transfusions, and giving her the medication to help fight off her body’s rejections, finally, a month after the surgeries, she’d gotten off dialysis for good.
The follow up of the transplants continued for a year, the originally 5.8 centimeter large donor kidneys, grew bigger with the recipients, and now, are at 10.5 centimeters, and eight centimeters, and the two young girls are “growing taller in very fast speed”, growing up happily right now, and now they only needed to pick up their medications at the hospitals and taking the meds on time, they’re now, living like, normal children.
And so, this, is the love that’s, left behind, after someone dies, and, these organ transplants for young children are really hard to get, because, most parents aren’t willing, to have their own children who’d died, cut open, and having their usable organs harvested, to give to other young children who are in need, but these organ transplants and organ donations, are the surest, to keep your child who’d died, alive, because they’re not really, actually gone, as their donated organs are, living on, in other children’s bodies, and, so, you’d be, saving, multiple lives, but this would be, a very, difficult decision for the parents of children who’d died, to sign off on.
How these, random acts of, kindness, from complete, strangers can, touch our lives and the effects of their kindness surely are, ever-lasting, translated…
Some twenty years ago, I’d gone to stay at California for a short while, after supper I’d still gone on a stroll like I would when I was at home, I’d often strolled by the residential estates, to work out for starters, and to get a closer look at the locals’ gardens, the quietness was what made the years memorable to me; but, what touched me the most, was the lights on the front porch that the local residents left turned on for the strollers to be able to see better in the nights. How the lights were, motion-activated, lighting up the path before me. Many a year later, these sensor lights became, more prevalent here in Taiwan, that was when I’d, realized, that I may have, interpreted, too much, into what I’d felt back in the U.S. on my trip from back when.
Switching gears to May of 2021, the unannounced power outages came, in the darkness, the inconvenience, I’d found, that sense of warmth of the light too.
It was seven in the evening, I’d walked that path I’d walked for over a thousand times home, the street became too dark beyond my recognition, someone used the flashlight on their cell phone to light up the way; but the bigger light came, from the local residents, the families put out their flashlights in front of their homes, some hung on the first-floor front doors, some on the second floor balconies, those lights that are up and down, are all the love, compassions of the local residents, not for themselves, but for those, who are, heading home at night, to get them safely, home.
You may be, on that path, with the dimly lit light, but, there’s, that warmth from within, and, the steps you stepped felt, lighter, and, you’d started, humming that song as you walked onward.
And so, this, is from the kindness of, complete strangers that offered that light to light the way, for the passersby to their, neighborhood, because they know that there’s, a need for those out and about to see the way, and offered their kindness to those around them.
Blessings of day-to-day life, acts of kindness, from stranger, on her trip to the local marketplaces, translated…
Went to the Fuhe early market places to shop, dragged along a basket full of vegetables, fishes, fruits, as I hauled onward, there was, that feeling of, I can’t go any further, then came, “Miss, Miss, you’d lost a wheel on your cart!”
Turned around to look, a man in a red jacket, picked up that tiny wheel, called out to me loudly. Ahhhh! How will I, drag these, over ten kilograms’ worth of groceries home? I’d taken the wheel from the man, stood dumbfounded, not knowing, how I would be able to, do it, suddenly, an older woman with silvery her took out a tiny pin from her purse, told me, “try this!”
a cart full of groceries like this…
She’d, placed the needle of the pin through the wheel of my shopping basket, put the padding across, then, placed that needle of the pin through the holes, and, it’d, worked, steadied the wheel in its place, so my shopping basket doesn’t, fall, apart. I’d, pressed my cart to lower it to tilt, the smaller wheel wasn’t used anymore, and I was able to, haul my cart full of groceries home using those two larger wheels.
I’m more than grateful for the man who’d caught my wheel as it’d rolled off, along with the older woman who’d given me that pin, with their helps, I was able to, successfully, get my cart’s worth of groceries, home.
This still showed, how easy it is, to offer the help that someone needs to them, and, by the random acts of kindness shown to this woman, this woman was able to find something wonderful in her day, and I’m sure, she’d become, infected too, with that sense of help, that she would be more than likely, to help someone else in need, at a later time when she comes across someone else who’s, in need of, assistance.
A story of hope, something we’re, lacking in this day and age now, off of the Front Page Sections, translated…
For the past weeks, it’d been, very cold here in Taiwan, but, there was something heartwarming in Taichung worth mentioning.
This was started by the students of Fengjia University. The students were preparing for the finals week, with the temperatures dropping down, and they’d, made the time, to go to the mountains of over 2,000 meter above sea level to bring the kids studying in the elementary schools up in the mountains to the cities, to experience life in the cities, and university life, opening up the eyes of these young elementary school age children.
Lishan is 160 kilometers away from the Fengjia University it’s the largest, least densely populated, with a large area location in the city’s districts, the land area ranked fourth, and there are only about 10,904 people who live there locally. From before, when the only road was the crosspath of the locale, but since the earth quake of September 21st, the foundations of the entire passage had been severed off sectionally. And currently, there were the three opening times for the locals of Lishan to go in and out.
“Companionships from University, Bringing Kindness to the Distant Regions” is a social responsibility project set up by the Fengjia University, two years ago, the program started helping with the transportation of elderly people in Lishan to the hospital, and set up the work stations in the local communities. In the field researches that the university conducted, they’d found, that the greater Lishan Region had the “ten days on, four days off” scheduling that was very unique in Taiwan. And so, the teachers of the schools in Lishan all climbed up the mountains to give the lessons, and because of the way being too far off, the schools and the parents decided, that the teachers should hike up the mountains, teach for ten days, then, hike back down the mountains, have four days off, and yet, the parents of the area mostly worked in farming, and for the four days off (usually from Friday to Monday), the parents couldn’t find the time to watch over their own young, nor could they keep track of where their children are, and it’d, caused the students to not have anything constructive to do, exposed in the dangerous conditions, and causing the troubles for the communities, as well as the families too.
The Fenjia Team after discussing with the local communities and the church, they’d decided to combine the Hoping Elementary, the local church, the Wenhwa Health Station, as well as other parties, pushed forth the “Work-Stay program”, inviting the college age students to accompany the children in Lishan afterschool, and, as the teachers take their time off and hiked down the mountains, the college students would, hike up to stay and keep the children company, to use the group activities, and the character education courses, to guide the students to behave themselves right. While the tribal churches would, provide the college students with the room and board programs, and the students get to have a firsthand experience of the lacking of the distant regions at the same time. Last week, this group of college students hosted a fundraising for this group of children in the Lishan Elementary School to come down the mountains for a trip, hosting the two days one night, city and university experience, and found the enterprises that will help with the room and board of these children during the time.
In the company of the college students, the children got to experience the city for the very first time in their lives. They’d visited the Natural Sciences Museum, the Opera House, the Fengjia University campus, as well as the Taichung city hall too, and at the same time, the kids had a steak lunch with the city councilpersons. This sort of a city tours, other than immersing the children into life in the big city, to experience different ways of life than what they are accustomed to, it’d also given the kids a better understanding of their environments, as well as giving them a deeper understanding of the occupations available to them too. The next stage, we’re thinking of how to lead the college students into the tribes to conduct the field researches, and the community designs, using the university as a base, to push forth the revitalization of the tribal regions.
There are so many needs from the distant regions in Taiwan, that the local governments can’t look after on their own. We hope, that in the near futures, there would be, more college instructors who are willing and able, to go to the distant regions, to accompany the children, to utilize the passions of the college students, and the energies, to open up the roads of these distant regions, to instill hope, in these, tribal areas.
And so, this, is a great program that the university had, started up, and the key is to make it last long-term, that it won’t be just for three minutes, until the heats cooled down, it’s a great plan, and, the steps to making this work is slowly taking place, and we need more people who are, willing and able, to give to the children living in these, distant regions.
The kindness from, an unknown stranger toward you, and now, you’re, passing it along, see how one tiny act of kindness, can generate a whole lot of kindness in the world? Translated…
I’d often heard the saying, “the most beautiful sight in Taiwan are the people!”, and I’d, also heard the evidences from others to prove otherwise, but, based off of my own personal experiences, the statement is, absolutely, TRUE!
On a day of light drizzles, I’d gone to a supermarket to pick up some things, after I’m done shopping, I’d carried the paper bags full of groceries, stumbled, to the bus stop, and, the pavement was wet and slipper, and, I’d lost my foothold, and fell flat on my face, can you imagine how bad I’d, looked! I’d, struggled to get myself back up on my feet again, and, I’d found, that the paper bag I’d carried my groceries in had ripped wide open, and everything was, scattered all over. This was, probably, the WORST fall I’d ever had, in recent, years!
As I became flustered, there came, a bag into my field of vision, with the cutesy bear print on it, followed by this, voice of an angel, “are you all right? Here, take this bag!”, a tall girl, held her hand out for me to hold to get back up on my feet, I’d looked at that folded neatly shopping bag, cried aloud, “that, is exactly, WHAT I need!” but then, I’d, hesitated, “then, how should I, return it, back to you?”, the young woman who seemed like a working class member smiled, “you don’t need to!” and I’d, collected everything that fell out, then, that cute bag didn’t look that huge but, it’s, big enough for everything I had bought; I’m guessing, that the extra space, must be from, that young lady’s, compassion then.
From that day forth, I’d also, carried an extra, folding bag inside of my regular shopping bag, because I knew, that there’s a tiny chance of me, running into, that young woman again, but I can, pass her sense of kindness to others who are in need.
And so, this young woman may not know it, but her “tiny” act of kindness, had rippled outward, and, it will keep getting bigger, bigger, bigger, like how one solitary drop of water that fell into that pond of things, expanding, outward. And to think, that all of this, started with, one helping hand toward someone in need, and that someone being, a stranger too!