It happened in one of our favorite places. Vacationing in Michigan with our family, we went to one of our front-runner restaurants: Luisa’s. It’s THE spot in the one horse town of Harbert. Since there are 17 of us, we arrived in three cars. When our grandson arrived with his wife, 16 month old daughter & another one of our grandsons, parking places were scarce for that popular eatery. When he saw an opening and started to park his car, he heard the honking horn of another customer who was quite irritated that it appeared that the parking spot he had been eyeing was now being taken. Our grandson backed out to give the first comer his space. The man waved to express his satisfaction that the right choice had been made.
Inside the restaurant the man who had insisted on his parking spot walked to our grandson’s table. But it was not to give him another piece of his mind. It was to apologize. Not only did he say he was sorry for his childlike vexation, he also said he wanted to buy breakfast. Not just for our grandson, but for all four at the table.
That became the topic of conversation. Not the free breakfast, but that someone could realize a personal error and correct it with kindness. It was refreshing.
Of course we had been talking about the tragic shootings and loss of life in Orlando, Dallas, Nice and now Baton Rouge. The prevalence of anger and violence make us wonder if there is any goodness left in our world.
There is. I saw it in a little restaurant that serves amazing pancakes. But the food and fun of eating together didn’t win our attention that time. It was goodness, kindness, humility and grace extended.
I know nothing about this man other than he wore a red shirt. He was a reminder that goodness and kindness are alive and well in many people. Sometimes it shows up in our favorite places when things seem to have gotten off to a bad start.