Ok, so I need to let everyone know about the rollercoaster of feelings my morning has had so far and how I ultimately became a victim.
Of what? You'll have to read on to find out.
First off, I should mention that today started off fairly normal. Went to bed the usual time last night, around 1:00am. However we got up a little late this morning, 8:00am. Daughter has to be at school at 8:30am so it was an all too familiar scramble around the PostIdol Media household getting ourselves ready and our now, all-of-a-sudden, incredibly slow daughter ready. But ultimately we get out of the house. By we, I mean me and my daughter. My wife tells me today she's busy this morning and not coming for morning wake up drive.......fine.
So, I get our daughter to school, late, I might add. And then I go off on our usual routine, solo, to Tim Horton's (Biggest Canadian Coffee & Fastfood drive-thru for all my American friends who don't know). When I get to the turn into the complex the Tim's is in, the lineup is backed all the way to the entrance. I should mention that there is a McDonalds in the complex as well, but this lineup is for Tim's - My luck!!
By this point, I am starting to see how this day is shaping up. I pull up behind an older green Mercedes. And the lady driving is texting or something, not sure, but she is not paying attention and the car ahead of her has pulled forward already. Annoying. And although it is maybe two seconds we sit there, it feels like 5 minutes.
Now, I am pretty patient and because I drive a Chrysler 200, anyone who owns one knows it does not have a polite little honk. It's no honk or loud "Move your F$%in' Ass" honk", there is no polite "Hey lady, the car ahead of you has moved forward, can you pull forward so the car behind me can get into the complex and not hang out into the street stopping traffic?" type of honk. So, I just sit there.
We move forward a little further and we are at the point where the cross-traffic from people leaving McDonald's crosses over our line. Everyone always leaves the lane open and then pulls forward when they see room for their car in the continuation of the line on the other side. Well, the lady in front of me continues to wait, and when a space opens up, in my head, she isn't moving fast enough to get over there, again delaying our line up.
Finally, she pulls forward and I see that there is room for two cars there, and no McDonald's cross traffic coming, so I cross with her. But, she decides to leave half a car length between her and the vehicle ahead of her.
By this point I am frustrated. Not aggressive, or visibly yelling or anything, but just getting into a little hissy fit in my head. So, I pull up right tight to the back of her car. Again, not wanting to use the Mack Truck horn I have in my Chrysler. On top of it, at this point, we have the regular homeless guys on the corner smoking up a storm, and the wind is going in my direction. All I can think is FML!!
We get through the line, albeit slowly, and when she gets to the window to pay, she is talking with the cashier, taking her time paying with her debit card, and just being consistent with the whole performance to this point. Finally she drives off.
I finally get to the window, and the cashier tells me that she already paid for my order.......
She already paid for my order.......let that sink in a little. I know there are much worse people out there than me. But I was pretty frustrated and annoyed in my head......and then she paid for my order!!
In that moment, my whole perception and attitude changed. It's not cause I didn't have to pay the $6.50 for my order. It's simply in the gesture. I was so taken back. For the first time ever I was a victim of "pay it forward". And I say victim, because like the victim of a small crime, I felt awful!
I got my order, pulled out of the complex, and pulled up beside her. I rolled down my window and said "That was very sweet. Thank you so much!" and a very nice lady responded with a smile "Hey, no problem. I have had people do it for me and it just brightens the day. Just paying it forward! I hope you have a great day!". I said "thank you" once again and we drove off.
Now, I am the type of person that I dress all in black, all the time, often wear sunglasses and generally look like a grumpy person. But if you actually talk to me, you would see, literally....."that's just how my face goes". lol. I am a very sensitive, emotional and caring person, especially to those I love. I am also a VERY reflective person, and this act of kindness gutted me!
So I want it to be painfully clear, I don't really consider myself a victim. I am happy to have been the recipient of, not only a nice deed, but also a deed that made me reflect on my life, others' lives and humanity as a whole. Maybe we would all get along a little better if instead of cutting each other off, flipping the finger to each other and all out acting like asses......we took a little responsibility for ourselves and realized, it very well could just be us, our problem, WE ARE THE CAUSE!
My bad morning was ALL ME. This nice lady showed me that. I was over-reacting, judging, and just getting myself in a worse mood by the minute, and in one gesture, she completely unraveled it and turned my outlook on the day around. *got goosebumps just writing that!
So, thank you very much Miss Green Mercedes, for the breakfast and for the life lesson.
"I hope you have a great day too!"