If you're anything like me, you've been having a rough couple of days. I'll blog more about that later. However, this afternoon, I was reminded how small acts of kindness can go an exceptionally long way.
Today is Veteran's Day, and fortunately, I'm off work today. I'm also a veteran. Unfortunately, I feel like I'm so behind on work that I decided to spend the day playing catch up. So, I started my morning sitting in a Starbucks, with a drink and vigorously deleting emails, and replying to others, and setting dates in my planner. The part of my job that I like the least. I'm such a teacher. Paperwork sucks....teaching young minds...now that's magic, and I never tire doing that.
I told myself that I would without a doubt take some time today to train Jiu Jitsu, which I did in Lincoln Square. Following training, I decided to return to my previous activities, and walked down the street to the local Starbucks. It was at this point, that my day was made.
As I was approaching the door, a pretty young woman was also approaching. I had my headphones in. I'm not much in a mood to engage with people today. The last few days have been stressful...I'm sure you understand. However, I quickened my pace lightly so that I could open the door for her. As I pivoted, pulling the door behind me, I noticed that she was saying something. Human voices are often drowned out by Slipknot blasting at full volume.
I paused my music, smiled, and said "Excuse me?", to which she replied "I said something smells really good!"
"Why yes it does!" and I chuckled, and we entered the establishment. I moved over to an empty table and dropped my bag and coat. I then slowly glided over to the line area. At this point, I was at the end of a line of about 6 people,and the young lady was at the front.
I grabbed a sandwhich from the cold case, and looked up, to see the woman waving me over.
I was a little bewildered, and squeezed past the people up to the woman. I thought maybe I'd dropped something, or someone had grabbed my bag and spirited out the door. I normally am a rather optimistic person, but my spirit was low today.
"I want to treat you today." she said matter of factly.
"There's no need for that" I responded. It was the first thing that came to mind.
"There doesn't have to be a need. I want to. You have a kind smile and face."
Wow. How often do we say that to each other? At that point, I couldn't help but smile more. It was at that moment I think I really noticed her smile, and her eyes, her friendly demeanor and pleasant nature.
I thanked her. I was humbled. I really didn't know what to say. But I immediately noticed how my mood immediately lifted, and how my fake smile was now a real smile. We introduced ourselves. We chit chatted. We eventually came to the conclusion that we both work for nonprofits, and actually may have overlap in our work that may create a perfect occasion to partner together. We exchanged cards. Finally, upon receiving our drinks and my sandwich, we exchanged pleasantries and a hug.
Prior to parting company...I asked if I could take a picture.
"Are we going to take a selfie?"
"Yes...I'm going to put you in my blog."
"Sure...as long as you don't tell a story about this crazy lady in Starbucks."
Absolutely not. It will be very pleasant.
And so we smiled and posed.
This is my new friend Tee. She bought me a grande Green Tea Latte and a Thanksgiving Turkey Panini. She made my day. She lifted my spirits on a day when they were at their murkiest. She reminded me that no matter what challenges we face, there are tons of super good people in this world. She reminded me that relatively small acts can have a huge impact. She gave me a much needed hug.
Thank you Tee. Today was the start of a beautiful friendship.
Now, if you liked what you read, first and foremost SHARE IT WITH OTHERS!!! Also, be sure to know every time I post a new entry. Subscribe Now! You can check out Reflections of a Chicago Life on Facebook. I post a lot of articles and we can have some wicked discussions on there. You can also check me out on Twitter, and see all the things I see around the city on Instagram