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During my many city walks and day hikes, I invariably stumble upon the odd item that feels out of place. Typically it is an article of clothing, a toy, or an object of perceived value. It appears someone has found something and carefully positioned it in plain view should the owner return for it. One doesn’t know whom they are helping and the owner doesn’t know whom to thank. I’ve encountered this practice in Vilnius, Lithuania, the home of my parents, and in Southern California where I grew up. I suspect this anonymous act is a global and ancient tradition. During a time of political strife, racism, and pandemic, it gives me comfort to know kindness perseveres.

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