I am a cashier at a department store. It is near the beginning of November, and people have already begun Christmas shopping. A woman comes up to my register, and as I am ringing up her items, we begin to talk.
I ask her if she’s started Christmas shopping yet, noting the multiple children’s toys on the counter. With a shake of her head, she says that they’re for her nieces and nephews. She looks upset, so I ask her if something is wrong. She tells me that her fiancé had been taken off of life support a few weeks previously, having been declared brain-dead after an accident.
Since there are few customers in the store at the moment, she tells me about her fiancé. I listen and offer my condolences, knowing what it is like to face the holidays for the first time without someone you love. As she gathers her things and is getting ready to leave, I ask her if it would be all right if I gave her a hug. She says yes, so I walk around the counter and hug her. She has tears in her eyes when the hug ends, and she thanks me before leaving the store.
Last week, the woman came into the store and again ended up at my register. She recognized me immediately and smiled, thanking me for my support. If you’re somehow reading this, I’m glad I could help you feel better, ma’am, and I’m sorry for your loss. The holidays are rough when you’ve just lost someone you loved, but you can get through it.
I am a young (21-year-old, married) mother of the most adorable seven-month-old baby girl. I recently found out that I am pregnant again and am feeling pretty miserable. In addition, my husband left on a business trip the week before and got delayed for another two days, adding up to almost two weeks. So, all in all, I am not a very happy camper.
Since my husband has the car, Baby and I joined my parents at a trip to [Large Grocery Chain]. As we are leaving I realize that I have forgotten to pay for a couple of baby items, so I go back to the cashier that served me and explain the situation. Since she is already serving the white-haired gentleman behind me, I step aside to wait until they are done.
The gentleman takes my items from the bagging area, has the cashier swipe them and hands them to me. I am so surprised that I sort of squeak out a thank you and just stare. My mom immediately protests and pulls out cash to repay him. He looks at her, smiles and says, “Haven’t you heard of random acts of kindness?”
His random act of kindness really meant a lot more to this random young woman than he can ever imagine.
I’m an Indian-American. It is November 9, 2016, the day after an unthinkable presidential election just happened.
After spending the morning in shock and anger, and apologizing to my Muslim friends for this horrible election, I head out for lunch. I deliberately choose a small Thai restaurant… one that doesn’t have blaring TVs.
When I enter, I am dismayed to see that I am the only non-white customer. Feeling very nervous and wary, I ask for a table away from these other customers, and brace myself for some very unpleasant, overheard “celebratory election conversations.”
Instead, I heard nothing but normal, everyday discussions, on families, Thanksgiving, etc. As they left the restaurant, several people also smiled at me in the familiar “quick hello” way I’ve known all my life in America.
I am very grateful to these customers, for giving me some peace of mind and hope, on a day when I needed it the most.
At work, we’re able to send group messages around the floor. Recently one of the operators sent this gem:
“A woman just called in and told me that she had to take her dog to the emergency vet. He’d been bitten by a rattlesnake but they wouldn’t give him any anti-venom since they didn’t have any insurance. It was $1000 upfront. A man who had brought his own pet in overheard and paid $500 on the spot to help the woman’s dog. It’s good to hear that there are still decent people out there.”
For the record, I work in emergency dispatch and we hear many horrible things. I’m not sure why the woman called in about that or if she was calling for another reason and happened to tell the operator about her dog, but it really was a wonderful story to lift the spirits when morale can be so low with the things we hear on a daily basis.
I had to go to immigration to renew my visa as I’m a foreigner living in Japan. Once I reach the bus stop a little old lady is there. She asks me something but I don’t understand. Next thing I know she is offering me wrapped candies. I refuse, politely. Suddenly she is putting her hand, and the candies, into my jacket pocket. Okay, lady, arigato.
Later I stop at a restaurant for lunch. In Japan, sometimes you are expected to pour water for yourself. The little old lady seated next me gets up to get herself some water but offers the cup to me instead.
Thank you, little old ladies, for your kindness towards a foreigner.