The new AirBnb that Jamo and I are at has a coin operated washer and dryer. Which is fine, but I rarely have cash and even more rarely have change and there is no change machine. Due to my procrastinating tendencies, today is laundry day and I had one quarter. I found some cash and decided to walk the couple of blocks to the downtown beach area to try and find a storefront shop that would let me buy some quarters.
The restaurant I stopped in to get some breakfast and quarters was too busy for me to bother them to ask for change. I got my breakfast to go and headed on down the street looking for another place to get my quarters. The only store I found that was open, the lady looked at me like I was crazy and just shook her head no and walked off. Then I spotted the tiny little convenience store around the corner and was certain they'd be able to give me change.
I pick out some snacks, pay using my card, hold out my $6.00 in cash, and ask the cashier if I could please have quarters. He goes, "I can only give you $2.00 in quarters." I heard him but I needed some time to do math in my head so I said, "sorry, what did you say?" He repeats himself.
-my brain: the washing machine costs $1.50, the dryer costs $1.25... I have one quarter at home, I need at least $2.50 in quarters to make this work... oh well, I'll just wash what I need and hang it outside to dry afterward-
"Okay, I'll take it. Thank you." He hands me back my change and I only have two dollar bills back because he gave me $3.00 in quarters. I looked up at him, confused, and he just said, "that's how you treat nice people." I thanked him again, excited that I could pay for drying my clothes now, and headed back to our home-base. While I was walking, though, I got to thinking...
I don't know why this place is hard up for change, but this guy showed me an act of kindness he didn't need to simply because I was a reasonable adult that didn't make his life any harder because I didn't get my way. This got me thinking more, in general, about how poorly we treat people these days. Healthcare, retail, service industry, sales, customer service, etc... These people are doing you a favor. He didn't need to give me ANY quarters. That server doesn't have to bring your a drink. The lady trying to figure out a mistake on your bill doesn't need to help you. Your healthcare staff is not required to give you a warm blanket. Quit being such a jerk to the people you're asking help from. Where did our manners go?
So, this is your reminder to be kind. Hold the door for people, put your shopping cart away, don't litter, try to be understanding that we're all out here just doing the best we can, and quit being a d**k.