A couple of weeks ago, my husband and I took a long weekend to visit family. It was time very well spent.
The only downside was getting caught in terrible traffic for way too long. Finally at our hotel, we were happy to walk to whatever restaurant we could find. (I think both of us would have gone to bed hungry rather than get back in the car in search of dinner.)
We quickly stumbled upon a relaxed spot that looked appealing. With flying mermaids hanging from the ceiling, how could we possibly pass it by? Sinking into our booth, we scanned the menu. An especially likeable young server was quickly at our side and dinner was ordered. Things were looking up. Yep, we would do fine.
It was only after a minute or two that the noise bouncing all around the room began to invade our ears – blaring music and happy diners. It was a jovial yet hardly the relaxing spot we may have preferred. There was a moment of wondering if we had made a huge mistake. (Well worn ears and loud restaurants – anyone else experienced this exhausting combo?)
And then the most amazing thing happened. As we sat there a little shell shocked, one of the people seated across from us at a table of eight (who, moments before, had all stood to sing their friend a rousing version of “Happy Birthday”) got up. Walking over to our table, he offered each of us a piece of their birthday cheesecake. Smiling as he set them down, he offered, “Here, you look like very nice people. Enjoy your dessert before your dinner!”
Just like that, the noise faded into the background. Smiles appeared on our faces, we thanked him profusely, and raised our glasses to everyone at his table! Strangers connected through kindness and generosity. Pretty great, huh?
And really now, dessert before dinner? See, there are real advantages to being all grown up!