February 15, 2012
“Funny you sent this email the day we did a good deed for my neighbour,” writes Graham Sandiford, owner of Paragon Landscapes in Whitby.

“Two doors down from us are John and his elderly mother. In between us and them sits an empty house out of which the owner has moved and is not interested in listing, just yet. John’s property is surrounded by mature trees that had shed leaves for the season. I decided to clean up the empty property, because no one else will. But, I got carried away and started cleaning in front of John’s house. He got home from work to find me in his front yard raking leaves and asked me why I was doing it. I replied, ‘Just felt like it. You’ve got enough on your plate with your mom and all.’ ”

Sandiford went on to explain that John’s mom has caregivers who come daily to the house. Besides caregivers walking in and out of the house, John’s mom also needs an unobstructed walk to move in and out of the house. Sandiford explained, “Along with this, John was recently diagnosed with colitis. Yet there he was apologizing for not picking up the leaves sooner.   

“I simply said, ‘Go inside and take care of yourself and your mother. I’ll finish the back yard tomorrow.’ Helping my neighbours who were in need brought me much more satisfaction than the couple hundred bucks I would normally charge,” writes Sandiford. “Thanks for the opportunity to share.”