Paying it Forward (And Backwards)
Have you ever had “one of those days” when you felt like nothing was going right? It started when I overslept and then went to put on my favorite shirt and noticed that there was a stain on it. Then the coffee maker wouldn’t work right, so I left the house without my coffee. What else could go wrong? As I got into my car, I realized I needed gas. The line at the gas station was 3 deep…
“What a great way to start my day”, I say to myself!
After a busy morning, I decided to pick up some lunch to bring back to the office. As I pulled into the drive-thru, another car zips in right in front of me. I take a deep breath and silently grumble to myself … and then FINALLY… it’s my turn to place my order! As I drive up to the window to pay for my meal, I’m so frustrated. Little did I know that things were about to turn around!
The young lady at the window gave me a big smile. Before handing me my order, she told me “the man in front of you just paid for your meal, because you let him get in front of you. He said he was in a rush because of a meeting in about 15 minutes, and he was already running late because he had a flat tire!”
I was stunned and surprised by the gesture. Even though the man had what seemed like a worse morning than I did, he went out of his way to say thank you for letting him in front of me at the drive-thru. I was caught a little off guard, but decided that I should “pay it forward” (or “backwards” in this particular instance), so I asked the young lady if the car behind me had ordered already, because I wanted to pay for their lunch. Her smile got even wider and she said they had indeed placed their order, and that their order came to $7.52. I gave her the money for their order, asked her to tell them to “have a great day” and then headed back to work.
My day that had started out so poorly ended up resulting in a string of kindness!
About two weeks later, I stopped by the same drive-thru and that same young lady took my order. When she saw me, she called out to her co-workers, “This is the woman who started it all! She’s the one that “Paid it forward”!
“Did you know that what you started lasted for about six cars?” she exclaimed. “I’ve never seen anything like it and the customers seemed so happy to pay for each other’s meals! It was so cool to see that happen!”
It doesn’t take a lot to make someone’s day. A smile, a thank you, an act of generosity – all are great ways to give back in only a moment.
About JoAnn Angeli
JoAnn is Keenan’s Meetings & Events Specialist as well as the proud “momma” to Chewy, her 7-year old canine “son”. When she’s not planning an event for the Company, JoAnn keeps busy by getting involved in her community.