“I hope I don’t see anyone I know in here today,” I said to Katie as I pulled open the door to our neighborhood Caribou coffee shop. The smell of coffee beans wafted up and camouflaged any other odors.
“Me either,” she said. We both had the same sort of outfits on and were both out in public without one smudge of makeup. My sweatpants were not as cute as Katie’s leggings, but our grubby T-shirts complimented each other’s. I guess you could say we were the closest that we would ever get to matching mother-daughter outfits.
The lady behind the counter patiently waited as we scanned the menu even though we knew all the latte and cooler combinations by heart. She smiled as we quietly talked about whether we should order drinks for Laura and Matt or wait and order on our way out. We decided we needed to sit down and chat for a while. We quickly glanced at the customers and were relieved that we did not know one soul.
“I’ll have a small skim latte,” I said, and Katie ordered one of her favorite coolers.
“Is that all you want then?” the lady asked with one eyebrow slightly raised.
“Yes, that will be it.”
“The person who was here before you left this money,” she said as she held up a $10 bill. “They said that I was to use it to pay for the next customers’ drinks.”
Katie looked amazed, and I mirrored her expression.
“That is the nicest thing!” I said. “We could really use a surprise like that today. Thank you.”
I heard of things like that happening, and I thought that the timing was just perfect because inside I was feeling how I looked on the outside, and I think that feeling could have been gravitating over to Katie.
Right away, this gift of a cup of coffee got me thinking about how nice humanity can be. It wasn’t only the caffeine that took me out of my grumpy mood that day.
Now, it’s my turn to pay it forward… Who knows how much I could brighten someone’s day?