a man & his dog, a burger, mixer & Goodwill stranger: linked.

Move over, monster in Walmart*! There’s motherly kindness in this world too.

*see post prior

A story to be shared. If it uplifts your spirit in this stressful holiday season or instills or renews faith in the power of paying it forward, all the more meaningful.

A couple weeks ago while pulling into Walmart, I pass an indigent man and his dog sitting in the adjoining In-and-Out Burger lot. I buy a double-double burger and fries and include in the bag a bottle of beer from a pack I’d just happened to have purchased at Trader Joe’s.

Walk up to the man, offer the meal with instructions to please share with his dog and use of my bottle opener if needed (it wasn’t).

About a week later, I’m at the Goodwill. COMPLETELY overstressed by holiday crowds and most of all the grind of noisy upstairs neighbors and constantly bad home situations.

I’m in line with a portable mixer (particularly for seasonal baking). Lady in front of me has a load in her cart. Stress is eating me up, my impatience is full tilt, my irritability sky high so while waiting I put head in hands and recite the serenity prayer in my mind time and time again.

When I look up, the clerk’s handing me the bagged mixer and the woman in line’s saying “it’s all paid for.”

“What? No,” I say “I’ll pay for it.”

“All paid for,” she says, smiling. I thank her profusely and depart, her blonde hair and smiling face the last things I see.

This town is unlike any other place for me! This kinda stuff happens so naturally here. A meal and beer for a man and his dog is returned as an act of kindness from a Goodwill shopper.

Paying it forward. Small random acts of kindness rise like leavened bread, multiply and are returned at times and in ways you could never see coming.

Every time I use that mixer, I’m going to remember the experience, think of her and be in gratitude for the gift that keeps on giving.


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