making someone’s day

So yesterday I was at Walmart, doing the usual pickingupafewthings and thanking my stars that I’ve managed to pick up so few items that I qualify for the express line and landed behind just 2 people. That’s a miracle in itself at 6 in the evening.

This lane happened to be the tobacco lane. The counter-lady was a soft-spoken middle-aged Oriental who spoke with a heavy accent.

The guy ahead of me was wrapping up and he said

“1 pack of marlboro lights please”

“youwant 1?”

“yes please”

“wat yaur dateobirth?”

“April 20th 1984”

Obviously I messed with the date, though the year’s intact and am thinking in my head, ah a nice 23 year old. He reminded me so much of this guy in Criminal Minds. Not as nerdily dressed, but swank with a baseball cap and well, well-built. He looked up at me and smiled. So I politely smile back and wish the lady would hurry up as I was starving by then.

“oooo nice day far birthday”

“o yeah? how come?”

“mye birthday too, April 20th” – ..and as an afterthought she adds
“but I muchh older than you”

“o no wayy” He smiles and winks at me.

“yesyes, me much older, you baby” she’s laughing and shaking her head at herself in the reflection of the shiny new spade he’d picked up.

” You don’t look a day older than 23 you know” – and this he says with such ernesty in his voice, and grinning good-naturedly.

“o no no no” – she’s grown a nice shade of bubblegum pink by then as she waves him off

There was a whole feel-good aura by then. It was a nice minute’s break of niceness in the cramped everyday bustle of life. It felt good seeing her tired wrinkled face break into a smile so genuine that her already small crinkly eyes were just mere black slits. The young man was not being funny, he wasn’t there with an intention to make her day, nor was he taunting or teasing her, but just by being a good-natured spirited human he not only made her day but he left a faint ripple of hope and happiness in the surrounding 5 feet of physical space.

He was a poster child for good breed, respect and class and surely though I was in no way related to him, I felt a teeny bit of pride with a dash of humility that young men of such caliber still exist.

***
The mail brought another pleasant surprise, a little strange but all in good humor.
***
So have you made a difference in anyone’s life today?
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13 thoughts on “making someone’s day

  1. In spite of all the hollywood hoopla about unruly kids, I sincerely feel a good percentage of kids here are quite sophisticated, polite and well mannered. I too have had similar experiences in a supermarket.

  2. radmila – it does, doesn’t it? :)

    Ok – am sure she’s flattered and what a good little boy you turned out ;-)

    leo – very true. The further you go inland, the better they are reared. Tipping their little caps, and calling you ‘Ma’am’ – It was quite the endearing experience some time ago in the mid-west!

  3. It is these things that make or mar a day at the end of it all. I try to be nice as much as possible – hope someone feels as happy to have encountered me today.
    I agree with you about the good upbringin – you dont find this kind of sensitivity going around a lot – this is one thing we can make our children see.

  4. I agree it is these small things that make ones day at the end of it all but alas it is precisely these small things that we forget.
    I agree about the upbringing part – this is soemthing we must make our children see, as we dont see much of this kind of sensitivity particularly among youth.
    Nice one.
    Well I try to be nice to everyone i come in touch with – hope it makes a diff to someone else’s life.

  5. came here via usha’s blog.i do try to make a difference in other people’s life but I do feel that people are not as receptive to kind gestures or words these days.I am on the wrong side of 50 and perhaps it is my age that makes me think so.Anyway my effort is on.

  6. sunita – Timing’s everything, even for us who don’t make a living out of it.

    Hip Gma – thanks for dropping by. You are right about reception being lukewarm to kindness, and I don’t think it has anything to do with age.. people have started taking each other for granted.

    usha – yes, it’s the small things that make a difference and kids would only learn by watching..

    orchid – there’s tons of hope :)

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