Jo Tyrrell

A rose by any other name ...

Jo Tyrrell
A rose by any other name ...

I promised this month we'd do something new ~and we did. And we did it well.

A city that is obviously close to my heart has had it's fair share of heartache this past month, and I wanted, in some small way, to redress the balance. London is a city that is more than just resilient. It has a strength that goes back hundreds and hundreds of years. Not only this but I find London has a magical quality about it, that I haven't found anywhere else. Even though New York stole my heart a few years ago, the magic of London never left me, and every time I go back to that sprawling mass of history I remember why I love it so much.

This was why this month I wanted to put a little love back there. In some tiny way we needed to place our stone on the scale and help tip it back.


So I enlisted a beautiful soul, Twyla - my dearest friend who I have watched grow from a young girl, into an incredible dancer, actress, singer and Kings Collage graduate. She's just won the staring role in Shakespeare's ´As You Like It´ I'm proud to say. This angel shines from the inside out and I knew she was the one we needed to cast our stone, and she did. In such a unique way that it gave me goosebumps.

This is a person who regularly helps those around her in whatever way she can, and this month she simply did it on our behalf. She found a woman who is currently homeless and, when speaking to Twyla had commented on how lovely she smelt. Twyla decided that since it was a brand new bottle of perfume that she happened to have in her bag, this would be the perfect gift from us at The 12 Dollar Club. The reaction was lovely by all accounts and I love this story for so many reasons.

There are so many incredible charities out there who give vaccines, who re-home people, who save lives, but I wanted this group to be able to do what they can't. To be able to give in ways that might seem frivolous to some, or give a small amount directly into the hands of a now hula hooping young girl in Cambodia. Buying lunch for a teacher or a bottle of wine on the door step for a mum having a tough day.

By giving this woman, not only the money for a hostel that night - which she did, she gave her something else, which for me is so much more important. Feeling like you belong, that you can be a part of something, even if it's just by smelling lovely while you try to survive in a place where smelling lovely isn't a priority. But to feel like you have something else, something more than just surviving, just some beauty - that, to me is a gift. Because so much of the world just survives and we are the lucky ones who get to indulge in these beautiful things. So to allow someone that, even in some small way is such lovely gesture. It was done there on the spot, and she would have done it without us. But I am SO glad we got to be a part of this.

I think all too often we feel that if we are giving then we're entitled to the moral stance on where or how that money should be spent. But truly giving, as we know, is to give with no expectation of receiving anything in return, that includes a moral pat on the back. This was a bottle of perfume, such a meaningless thing, and yet, to this woman who had made a point on commenting on the smell it must have seemed so out of reach, so unnecessary - and yet how often do we indulge in this ourselves? I love that tonight, in London somewhere - there is a lady called Debbie, who smells beautiful. And maybe she's even smiling.

Thank you 12 Dollar Club, thank you.