I worked late the other day and decided I needed something to eat before heading home. I started my hour trek from the south side of Chicago and pulled off at an exit with a Boston Market (one of my favorite “fast food” places for some reason).
As I got out of the car I realized I was really, really hungry all of a sudden and hoped there was no one in line before me.
As I walk in the door a very cheerful voice says “welcome to Boston Market…we’re glad you’re here!”. Wow, what a way to be greated. This very energetic young man took the time to stop his clean up duties and great me with a great smile and a kind voice. I respond “thanks” and realize “crud, there is someone in line first”. A very hungry looking man stood there staring at the menu as I was figuring out what I wanted to order.
Then, the man did a very simple thing: he turned and said “you go ahead, I’m still deciding.” He must have heard the grumbling of my stomach!
I ordered my meal, found a seat and began to consume both my food and the great novel I’ve been reading. I was so engrossed in a great part of the novel I didn’t realize the same cheerful young man was standing by my table and had said something I didn’t hear. When I looked up and asked him to repeat what he said, he said “I wanted to see if you were done …I’d be happy to take your tray for you”.
I was so touched by his kindnesss and cheerful attitude…a wonderful change from the indifference that often greets me …so I told him “thanks for greeting each guest so cheerfully and helping them to feel so welcome. It is a nice treat!”
Would I have said it anyway? Possibly…I do consciously practice an “attitude of gratitude” AND I’m absolutely certain the act of kindness I received raised my awareness even higher!
I was traveling and on a layover in Las Vegas. Sitting close to the Check In desk I overheard the agent asking another couple if they wanted to be “bumped” to another flight. As I was very interested in this I went up and quietly got in line.
As I got to the front of the line a man stood next to me and spoke in Spanish to the agent. She did not speak any Spanish and called for an interpreter which she was told would not be available. I immediately offered my services and explained that my Spanish was very poor and that I would be happy to try and explain.
As I explained to the man in my halting Spanish that he had not responded to being called earlier so his seat was no longer available I watched his demeanor stoop. He had to get on this plane. He had people waiting for him and he didn’t answer when he was paged because he speaks no English. The best thing the agent had to offer was a seat on the plane I was going to be taking. I offered to go with him and she said they would guarantee us seats together so I could help.
As we were leaving the gate for our flight the agent ran up and I was able to tell the man that a seat had opened up and it was his. My Spanish is not good and it was good enough to help in this situation.
Although I’m not new to technology (I’ve been a technical writer for over 25 years!), I’m a total rank newbie when it comes to getting internet technology to work and do what I want it to do. As I’ve gone through the process of opening a speaker business and launching A Million Stories of Kindness, I’ve felt like I’m swimming in a sea of new terms, options, capabilities, options and stuff.
I’ve got a bunch of different classes I’ve signed up for and one of them (which, I’ll admit, took me 2 months to get to), was Miguel Alvarez’s Social Marketing course. Once I got started, it took me step by step through how to get started in that particular part of the internet world. During the course, I noticed a link for a web hosting service (http://ThirdSphere.com/) and decided to check it out. I felt like I was reading a science fiction novel about a brave new world I had never heard of. There were tons of options, capabilities, comparisons … all great stuff and I hadn’t a clue what I was reading or how it compared to other providers out there.
I sent an email message to “Support” to ask a couple of questions and, to my amazement, got an email back from Miguel Alvarez himself! He was patient, gracious, generous, kind, and although my questions may have been ill-formed and downright rudimentary, I never felt like he was laughing behind my back. He steadfastly answered my questions…quickly and in language I could understand.
I’m truly grateful for his support and know he has given me a great gift…the gift of caring enough to make sure his prospective customers are well cared for!
Love and light, hugs and blessings
The other evening my wife and I stopped by a local Italian restaurant to share a meal. We specifically picked this restaurant because we had a “buy one, get one”. We were enjoying our meal when a family sat down nearby. This was a family with 3-4 kids and they didn’t appear to have a whole lot of extra money to spend on their dinner. They had brought some food with them and were discussing what they could get, and share, from the menu.
I realized these precious folks needed the coupon I had brought more than I did and that is when the idea formed in my heart…I’ll give the coupon to them! Since I figured they probably wouldn’t accept it if I walked over to their table and handed it to them, I chose a different route.
As we left the restaurant, I gave the coupon to our server and asked that she wait until we leave, then give the coupon to the family’s server and not share with them where it had come from. Our server agreed and we left the restaurant, feeling the open heartedness that I so love to feel.
I was reminded about how much kindness gives to the giver…always.