72. Pay for the person’s drink behind me in line at Starbucks.
Today I woke up in a crappy mood. I knew I had a ton of stuff to get done this week and I wasn’t looking forward to it at all. (Well, I’m still not looking forward to it but I do feel a lot better. I’ll explain in a minute.) My exam for my morning class was moved to Wednesday instead of today (thank gosh, because my mind felt like sludge mixed with partially dried cement this morning) but the review in-class wasn’t very helpful in making me feel better about it. I was starting to get a headache by the time class ended, and so I headed to my chill zone: Starbucks.
My favorite worker, a dude by the name of Garrett, was just getting ready to go on break when I walked in. He asked me how I was doing and I told him that I wasn’t feeling all that great. Of course, he was sympathetic. Then when I ordered my usual (which all the workers pretty much know right when I walk in) Garrett came up behind me and said, “You know what? Heather’s drink is on me today. Maybe it’ll make her day a little better.” So the barista rung it up under his number, and I got a free drink.
Wow. I was shocked. And surprised, but happy and extremely grateful. Seriously, these Starbucks workers don’t get any better than the ones in my town. It just wouldn’t be the same if they weren’t around.
Now fast forward 15ish minutes. I got settled in at my table, took out my planner and pencil case to figure out which homework to tackle, and plugged in my laptop. While working on my honors write-up for next week I began craving a cake pop and got in line to order one. The lady in front of me was still rummaging around in her purse after she finished ordering, so I told the barista I just wanted a cake pop and she rung it up. While this was happening, a girl walked in and got in line behind me. While I was waiting for the woman in front of me to get her drink, the girl behind me ordered her coffee over the food display case. When I glanced at her, I noticed how bright and shining her eyes were (like she had just walked in from a blizzard, or was on the verge of tears). As soon as the lady moved, I gave the barista my card and told her to charge the girl’s drink on it, too.
I’m not sure what made me do it. Probably the fact that Garrett made my day a lot better by buying my drink in order to brighten my day. I took my cake pop, got a napkin, and sat down at my table again. The girl approached me thirty seconds later, smiling, and said thank you. Her eyes were still shining, but her smile was big and genuine. It was then that my mind registered something that I had noticed the first time I looked at her, but hadn’t wrapped my mind around yet: This girl had no hair. She was completely bald.
People say that there are very few things that feel better than doing something nice for someone else. Not to say that I haven’t done nice things for people before (at least, I feel like I’ve been a pretty nice person to people most of the time) but this time really did make me feel warm and happy inside. Maybe it was the sparkle in her eye, maybe it was her bright, genuine smile. I don’t know. I’m just happy I did it. Plus, I fulfilled #72 on my Project Zero list. (: Score.