MUM’S THE WORD COLUMN: Some nice – and poor – courtesy in evidence

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A lovely little thing happened the other day – proving there are still some genuinely nice people out there.

We were walking back from town, along a stretch of road where the pavement isn’t particularly wide (we seem to have one of the broadest pushchairs, which has seen us almost stuck in the odd shop doorway and come a cropper on some uneven paths. In fact it’s a wonder Nancy hasn’t suffered whiplash for the first 11 months of her life) but basically there wasn’t a lot of room for passing anyone else and especially not the man on a mobility scooter, coming the other way.

Fortunately he spotted us in the distance and kindly pulled off into a driveway and waited while we passed by safely.

When I thanked him he struck up conversation, telling me what a beautiful baby I had – something which is always nice to hear; although he didn’t go the whole hog and say she must get her good looks from her mum – but hey, you can’t have everything!

And then he promptly handed me a £1 coin for Nancy’s piggy bank. Initially I refused, but he was very insistent so in the end I accepted graciously and popped it in my pocket to deposit into Percy pig on our return home.

As we went our separate ways the man’s kindness struck a chord. Good manners and a bit of chivalry don’t cost anything.

But sadly common courtesy seems to be all too lacking nowadays – I’m going to sound very old fashioned but a simple “please” and “thank you” go a long way in my book. As a parent I know I’ve got a huge responsibility to make sure that Nancy grows up to treat people with kindness, courtesy and respect and in a manner in which she would like to be treated in return.

It was only the next day when I had to force myself to practise what I preach.

Driving around the car park of a Holbeach supermarket, which shall remain nameless, looking for a space, I found myself getting increasingly hot under the collar because all the parent and child ones were full.

Normally this isn’t a problem but on this occasion I could see at least two lots of OAPs, who definitely didn’t have little ones with them, taking up the limited reserved bays.

However, I managed to bite my tongue and stop myself from giving the said offenders a piece of my mind – but I’d like to take the opportunity to say:

“If you don’t have a baby/toddler/little person with you then please don’t use the spaces which are allocated for those that do.”

There, that’s better. Thank you!