While my kids are at their various activities at VT, Luna and I take long walks around campus visiting all her favorite spots including the duck pond. After we have visited all her favorite places, we walk about a mile from campus to one of my favorite places, Starbucks. That particular morning we were also going to the library for story hour.
When we got to Starbucks I ordered my favorite drink while Luna walked around and smiled at everyone. I noticed two people ride up on their bikes and get in line behind me. I immediately felt that tug at my heart. They didn’t look like the usual clientele of college students and business professionals that frequented this Starbucks. They didn’t seem to be from the area. They were a little rough around the edges a young lady in her 20s and a gentleman older than me. After I ordered I lingered close to the cash register. The man asked the price for a small regular coffee and then ordered two. Without hesitation I pulled out my phone and paid for their coffee. They thanked me over and over and smiled and waved at Luna.
As I was loading Luna back up into the stroller they came outside to leave and thanked me again. I felt that tug so I asked them where they were from. We ended up having a 20 minute conversation about where they were from Weat Virginia, why they were in Blacksburg, about crime, drugs, fishing and county fairs. Those two cups of coffee broke through any barriers that might have been up. I could have stayed and talked with them all morning. At the end of the conversation they told me that there aren’t many people who are nice to strangers anymore like I was to them. The man then told me the song Take Me Home Countey Roads was not really about West Virginia and other trivia bits. I noded my head because I had no idea what they were talking about and they acted like I should.We said our good byes and I walked to the library my heart so full.
I was reminded again that time is one of the most valuable things you can invest in people. By taking the time to buy them a coffee and stop and have a conversation with them it made them feel valued. People want to been seen, to know they matter. I could have easily bought their coffee and walked away. Good deed done for the day. But the real act of kindness came from the time I took to talk with them, two strangers from Weat Virginia that many people would have shied away from. People just want people to be kind to them. As kind as they were to me, especially because they didn’t say anything to me when I pretended to know who John Denver was. Luna feel asleep when we were walking to the library so I took her for a walk on the Huckelberry trail. While on my way back the two people from Starbucks passed me on the trail on their bikes. They waved and smiled and wished me a blessed day. One more reminder how simple acts of kindness matter and people do too!!