I want to write about something that I saw on TV. It was one of those Hoarding shows. I know I know....They show some one's enormous hoard and then help is offered and maybe the person accepts the help given. This show was different.
Stay with me.
I want to write about the power of one.
One person who cared.
OK, it seems there is a gentlemen who lives in a small affluent town in a suburb of Wescott England. Now having English friends I remember them stating that people are passionate about their Gardens in England.
Richard Wallace is 59 years old and lives in that affluent town, but his home had turned into a hoarding nightmare. In fact, he had been featured on the news. His home was filled to the very top with tons of old newspapers and rubbish, and his front yard was strewn with mountains of plastic bags filled with garbage. His neighbors disliked him to say the least, and I guess some would say who could blame them...Richard's hoard had sent their home values plummeting. Not Good.
Even though Richard lived in that town all his life....he had no friends.
Not one friend.
Well, It seems that there was a Westcott in Bloom competition (The whole town would complete with other towns to see who's gardens were the best. To try and avoid the sight of Richard's yard the gardening committee suggested they pay for a fence to hide the rubble.
They hired Andy Honey (Awesome name!) to help with the sprucing up of the town and to install a fence to hide from view Richard's yard. Landscape gardener Andy Honey approached Mr Wallace with the offer and he accepted.
... the whole town was sprucing up their yards and gardens to try and get an award. All except Richard.
Even after the Judging ( the town only got the silver prize) Andy Honey ( again,don't you just love that name?) well, he decided that Richard needed some help. He offered his time and his landscaping tools to help Richard clear out the front yard.
The first day they managed to clear out the overgrown brush and it revealed tons of garbage ignored for years and years.
In later scenes you could see Andy and Richard conversing; the two of them laughing and genuinely having a good time.
Andy Left, but he wasn't done. He asked others to come and help; the front yard was much too much a job for just two men. Richard was frail; his only meal every day consisted of two hard boiled eggs.
Andy hoped and was not disappointed. Neighbors came and helped. They even brought meals every night for Richard.
In one scene Richard was so overwhelmed at the reality of what was left to do in his home that he started to cry. Andy said that it was OK. He told him he shouldn't be afraid to cry..."every man does once in a while".
Never once did he look down on Richard. Never once did he treat him like he was less than.
To me this was not just a show of someone with a huge hoarding problem. It was a show about the power of one man's kindness and the willingness of another to accept it. For years and years Richard was disliked and eventually ignored by his community. Other than the obvious hoard...he became invisible to everyone except Andy Honey.
Andy decided that he would help in the only way he knew how; and there is no doubt in my mind that his gesture of love and compassion for another human being...saved Richard's life. Andy didn't see a pariah, he didn't see someone he should avoid. He saw a person that was silently crying out for help.
He answered that cry by extending his hand.
They soon became good friends and the smile on Richard's face said it all. He was not invisible anymore.
Today I salute Andy Honey who though he was just one person was able to do what the whole town could not do.....Care and give of himself to someone that everyone had given up on.
So Mr. Honey Wherever you are....God Bless You!
Andy Honey and Richard Wallace
By The way my new favorite name is Andy Honey---His name suits him don't you think?
For I was hungry, and you gave Me something to eat; I was thirsty, and you gave Me something to drink; I was a stranger, and you invited Me in; naked, and you clothed Me; I was sick, and you visited Me; I was in prison, and you came to Me.’ “Then the righteous will answer Him, ‘Lord, when did we see You hungry, and feed You, or thirsty, and give You something to drink? ‘And when did we see You a stranger, and invite You in, or naked, and clothe You? ‘When did we see You sick, or in prison, and come to You?’ “The King will answer and say to them, ‘Truly I say to you, to the extent that you did it to one of these brothers of Mine, even the least of them, you did it to Me.’