Wednesday, March 14, 2007

Kindness

I have a bad habit of being wrapped up in my thoughts and not paying attention to the world around me. Usually this is the worst when I'm at the grocery store. If I take the boys (ages 4 and 1) plus my budgeted list I have a hard enough time keeping track of what I'm doing let alone the other people in the store.

Last night we were in need of a quickie grocery store trip- one of those 'we're out of milk and I probably should get bread...and fruit...and cereal...and...' so while Chad put the kids to bed I ran downtown by myself. When I walked in the store it was practically empty which is just the way I like it. No crowds, no noise, stocked shelves...peaceful shopping.

The very first aisle I went down I recognized the woman in the aisle. She was an employee and I had actually written her car insurance a month ago. I knew she wouldn't remember me so I thought about smiling and walking by but instead I decided to say hello. I'm not good at beginning conversations. I tend to be awkward and fumble to say the most basic sentences. So I said hello and introduced myself. She smiled and said "I'm so glad you said hello...I had a question about my bill..." I was able to answer her question and I was feeling pretty brave. I found the milk and it was on sale so I put two gallons in my little basket. Immediately I turned to the woman next to me and said "I don't know why I got the milk first, now I have to carry it through the store." She smiled but didn't say anything. Now I have talked to two people. I never do that! I picked up a few more things and then turned down the baking aisle to get some white flour. I stared at the flour thinking about how badly my arm was hurting and how I didn't want to add flour to the basket when I heard a voice behind me. "Why don't you take my cart? I only need these two things and you can't fit flour in your basket." It was the milk lady! My kindness had been repaid! I thanked her and she handed over her cart.

I'm not sure if I'm going to make it a habit now to talk to strangers or anyone for that matter but it sure was nice to have such a positive "people" experience. Sometimes I run into people while I'm out who are rude and unkind and sometimes I run into someone who brightens my day. I want to be like that- I want to be someone who brightens someone else's day. Because when I got home from the grocery store last night I was still smiling.

2 comments:

RealEstateGirl said...

That's one of the things I LOVE about the South! Being a Southern Girl, we know we all talk to each other, but they certainly don't up north!

RealEstateGirl said...

ooops! Just saw that you live up North....probably should have said, "in my experience!" people don't talk to each other (complete strangers) up north!!!