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70- YEAR-OLD Woman Struggle to Make Money Then Start Selling But No One Buys From Her, Until This Happens

Not all people are fortunate in life. Some struggle to have a decent meal day in and day out. When we look around us in public, many people need our help. Most do not have a home to live in. There are those who even stand in line every day to get a bed to sleep in, instead of having to sleep on the floor. That is why we must make society aware that help, no matter how small, is always welcome by those who need it most.

A kind gesture, a bottle of water, a piece of freshly baked bread, stopping to talk to them and asking them how they are doing—anything but passing them by or treating them with contempt. We live in a world accustomed to comforts, especially the younger generations, and we tend to forget about those who have not been as fortunate. We’ve despised them and see them as an inferior group of people who deserve neither our respect nor our attention.


The real drama of this world is the lack of humanity and the coldness of a superficial society that lives connected to the internet 24 hours a day. But all is not lost. There are still those who are able to look beyond social prejudices and show solidarity with those most in need. There are still people who look into their eyes and listen with their hearts. There is still love, and as long as that exists, stories like the one we’re going to explain will continue to make sense.

Leanne was 73 years old and had been living on the streets of Tainan for more than 20 years. She felt no shame about it; on the contrary, she was happy that way and didn’t feel she needed more. It was what fate had given her, and she accepted it without complaint. During the day, she would spend hours sitting on a small bench on the sidewalk with a cardboard cup in front of her, hoping some coins would fall in which she could buy some food or drink.


Leanne was fine with living that way, but what she couldn’t stand was indifference. She had always considered herself a cheerful and sociable person, despite her social status. She didn’t care what clothes people wore, their skin color, or how much their jewelry sparkled. All of that was secondary to her. But she seemed to be the only one who saw it that way because most people who looked at her only noticed her shabby clothes and poorly groomed hair, and it hurt her deeply.

However, Leanne had not always lived on the streets. She had a normal life with a husband, a nice house with a garden, and a steady job. She lived happily until the moment her husband died unexpectedly of a stroke at only 50 years old. The world as she knew it ceased to make sense to her. The grief of her husband’s death filled everything, and she couldn’t move on. “You must move on, Leanne. You need help urgently,” her friends would tell her when they saw her so sad, without leaving the house for weeks. But she never listened to them.


She quit her job as artistic director of a small art gallery and started drinking. She lost all her friends, and her family wanted nothing to do with her. She spent her time sleeping or drinking, and her life became a real mess that got worse as the years went by. The truth was, though, that most days not enough coins fell, and she went hungry.

When she began to live on the street, people seemed nicer. They stopped to talk more and were concerned about the reasons that had led her to live that way. Now it was an extraordinary thing that someone wanted to stop and talk to her. The usual thing was to run off in the opposite direction or turn away as if they had approached a large garbage can with the lid open.


And so it was that little by little, everything she had was disappearing, and her life was transformed into what we are telling you now. Although the Leanne of that time was much more lost and angry with the world, and then the Leanne of today.

Time does not cure everything, but it does make us realize our mistakes and gives us perspective to approach problems in a more coherent way. And that’s what she did. As time went by, she made new friends and found her place in the world, a place that had nothing to do with the life she had before but made her feel at peace with herself. She alternated nights on the street with nights in a small local hostel. It wasn’t much, and she didn’t always have the opportunity to sleep in a warm and comfortable place, but for her, it was more than enough.


As time went by, she picked up old habits and began to knit small garments to entertain herself. She could spend the whole day knitting without getting tired. Leanne had studied a fine arts degree, and one of her passions was creating crocheted pieces. Her grandmother taught her to knit, and it had always been something she was passionate about, although she never saw it as a profitable business. So she decided to become a patron of other artists in the gallery where she worked instead of being the artist herself.

At first, she knitted for the sheer pleasure of it, but many people appreciated her talent and encouraged her to sell her creations. “Have you thought about selling them? What do you think?” a fellow hostel member she trusted told her. They had known each other for more than five years. “Do you think anyone would want these trinkets?” Leanne answered resignedly, although deep down, she really wanted to try.


Weeks passed, and there were many other people, some she had never spoken to before, who told her the same thing and complimented her on her work. “You have to try, Leanne.” “All right, I’ll do it. But you’ll see how nobody will buy it,” she replied without being too sure of what was going to happen.

The next day, Leanne took her usual place in front of Shintandi, but instead of sitting with her hands folded, waiting for a coin, she leaned against the bench of a small steel board with all her crochet pieces exposed. Under each type of piece was a price tag, and at the base of the board, a message handwritten by her: “Crochet Crafts – Thank you for your contribution.”


At first, some people stopped to look at her board and asked her how she made them, but eventually, no one bought them. Weeks went by, and she didn’t manage to sell a single piece, not even the cheapest ones. Leanne began to despair and felt it was foolish to try to sell her creations on the street. She was about to throw in the towel until one afternoon, without warning, a very nice young man in his early 20s came to her stall and bought two of her cup holders.

The guy was really charming and complimented her on her work. “I love everything you do, ma’am. I’ve been passing by the street for some time and seeing your stall,” said the boy, shaking her hand in a gesture of thanks. The young man was surprised to see her crying and asked her if he had done or said anything to make her uncomfortable. “I’m crying from happiness, my dear. You made me immensely happy,” she looked at him with eyes full of gratitude.

After that first purchase, everything changed. Many people began to arrive, interested in the things Leanne made. Some even seemed to know her and were looking for specific items to buy. Leanne couldn’t believe it and didn’t understand this sudden change in her luck.


One day, after a young couple bought a pair of crocheted cup holders from her, she dared to ask them how they had found her. “You are the woman of the internet, the famous old lady of peanut candy crafts on Facebook. Everyone knows you, and we’ve seen your crocheted pieces. When we saw these cup holders, we fell in love with them and decided to come and get them,” explained the couple very enthusiastically.

Internet? How could she have seen her there? Someone had decided to share her story and her work to help her, and it worked. “You’re a wonderful crafts woman, and we will recommend your pieces so that other people will get to know you and come to your stall,” the couple told her before leaving and repeating once again how much they loved her crochet pieces.


After several days of non-stop sales, Leanne ran out of fabric and had to spend several days without going out to make new crochet pieces to put them on sale as soon as possible. During those days of work, she kept thinking about what had happened, and all her customers were telling her about the Facebook group where her work had become famous.

Finally, she decided to access the internet through the cellphone of a fellow guest at the hostel who had a smartphone and internet connection. Leanne asked him to look for the Facebook group that people had told her about, and after several minutes of searching, he found it.


Leanne’s success was due to the photos that one netizen shared on the Facebook group. The photo showed her selling handicrafts on the street with a very serious expression. Below, next to the photos, was a long text explaining in detail where they could find Leanne’s stall and encouraging them to buy her products to help her grow as an artist. The post shared by the netizen on the Facebook group read:

“The lovely old crochet crafts woman usually sells her wares near a hotel in Tainan and sometimes by the door of a store next to peanut candy in front of Shintandi. She is there all day long, and it never fails. Her handicraft is really wonderful, and she is a good person who needs our support and affection. Don’t hesitate to visit her little stall and help her by buying some of her artwork.”


Leanne could not believe what she was reading. The post not only talked about her little stall on the street, but there were also hundreds of comments from everyone who had already bought something from her. All the comments were positive, and Leanne couldn’t stop crying as she read them all.

“This job is really very good, yes, Grandma can make more money if someone helps her with online auctions,” a person commented. After doing some more research, Leanne discovered that the author of the Facebook post was the first person who had stopped to shop at her stall. He was a young student who lived very close to the hostel where she was staying.


So she decided to go looking for him to thank him for all he had done for her. The young man’s name was Thai, and he was 22 years old. With his help and that of the internet, Leanne now has a successful online store where she sells all her crocheted works all over the world. Currently, her store accumulates more than 1,000 sales, and her fame does not stop growing.

Since then, Leanne has never gone back to selling on the street or living in a shelter. Her work as a craftswoman has completely changed her whole life and has allowed her to have a good life again. All the money she earns from her art is dedicated to helping the needy and investing in art galleries with charitable works. Her great mission is to make the world aware of the need for solidarity and to live in a world where art and the work of artisans are recognized as they deserve.

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