- by adminand wasn't prepared for what an amazing experience it would be.
I went with my parents, who have been volunteering for two years or so and to their credit have been bugging me to come with them forever.
They're pictured here, looking amazing as per usual and holding the four cakes that my mum baked for this week's dinner.
Because in addition to giving up every Thursday night to come down and help serve dinner, my mum also does a ton of baking for the patrons so they always have a wide variety of desserts.
When you ask her about it she'll be like "oh it's no big deal" even though it's totally a big deal.
Which is why she's so cool.
So we went in and started prepping for dinner which was slow-cooker pulled turkey, mashed potatoes, veggies, salad and dessert and it was crazy to see how quickly everything came together and even crazier to see how quickly it went.
The line was intense and we served basically nonstop for over an hour.
I got to meet some really great, hilarious people who made the hours fly by in the blink of an eye.
But the real joy was being able to interact a little bit with the patrons, because it's really easy to become cynical and dismissive of people in our society who are less fortunate than we are.
We've all ignored that outstretched hand at least once in our lives.
So being able to help give them something of value -a warm place to hang out for a while, a decent meal, a friendly face- really affected me deeply.
I realized halfway through my shift that I recognized a lot of the faces coming through the line from my years of living, working, and going to school in downtown Winnipeg.
These people who smiled and waved and joked with us as they waited for their meals. People who thanked us and said "god bless you" and came back afterward to complement us on the food.
I saw a side of these people that I hadn't seen before, and it was wonderful.
You know, I go on a lot about how much I try to be a decent, contributing citizen and be someone who actually gives a damn about the world around me, and it felt good to start putting some money where my mouth is.
It was hands-down one of the most rewarding things I've ever done, and I'll definitely be going back next week.