I’ve always believed in the simple idea that one act of kindness can affect someone else. The “pay it forward” philosophy makes the world a gentler and kinder place. When my friend and former coworker, Angie Cossolotto, started a Facebook Group called Kindness Matters a couple of years ago, it sounded exactly like the type of thing I’d be interested in.
Each month the people in the group are tasked with a specific act involving kindness. I just completed this month’s challenge, and as always, I feel good about bringing some cheer to someone else’s life. When you have good role models, as I did with my parents, it doesn’t feel like I’m doing anything extraordinary.
I blogged about this once before with the coffee challenge to pay for the next customer’s drink. https://petespringerauthor.wordpress.com/2020/01/10/random-acts-of-kindness/ I forget who told me, but I read that this challenge took place somewhere and was so successful it started a chain reaction that lasted for hours with people buying the following driver’s coffee. It even extended into the next day. Wow! Would you want to be the person who ends that? What a real-life example of how kindness spreads!
The challenge this month was called “Tip the Bill.” We were to pick a waiter or waitress and leave a tip equal to the bill. Since the standard rate is around 20%, a larger than average tip would likely get the server’s attention. I never was a waiter/waitress (I’m not counting those glorious years at KFC), but I’ve been a customer plenty of times and have witnessed first-hand how difficult some customers can be.
In any service industry, the things I look for most in an employee are friendliness, efficiency, and respect. As soon as I saw the challenge, I knew who I wanted to recognize.
This is Roxy—a waitress at Café Marina in Eureka, California. She has waited on us many times and is consistently cheerful and hard-working. Roxy is the perfect waitress because she engages in friendly conversation, keeps our coffee cups filled, and yet respects our privacy. She is a genuinely thoughtful person—not someone acting in hopes of getting a bigger tip. I don’t know anything about her personal life. It’s not my place to ask. All I know is we’re happy every time she is our server. She was a good sport and touched when I told her I wanted to write a story about her today.
I think most people have empathy for local businesses and the challenges that COVID has presented them. It’s tough enough to stay afloat and make a profit, let alone during a pandemic.
I would be remiss if I didn’t add a comment to my fellow diners. Your waiter/waitress is a person who is doing a difficult job, sometimes in trying circumstances, waiting on demanding customers. Cut them a break, be friendly in return, and leave a generous tip when they deserve it. Not only will you be helping someone else out, but you’ll also feel good about yourself.
So, here’s to Roxy and all of the waiters/waitresses like her, who make eating out a pleasant experience. Kindness does matter.