Saturday, July 7, 2012

Unexpected Exhilaration

Today I was determined to cross an item off my list. Logan is out of town and I have a weekend of no responsibility. This was the perfect time. So I decided to spend my day in euphoria, aka the yuengling brewery. I called up a fellow beer lover and native Philadelphian, and without any hesitation a group of us were on our way. This is going to be an amazing day.

I knew I was in the right place when I read this sign.

After wandering around the gift shop for a while I headed over to the counter to find out where we needed to check in for the tour when I found out some very disappointing news.  I had the times incorrect for the tour and we were an hour late.  Tours were done for the day.  Looks like I'm not crossing anything off my list today after all.

This is when my optimistic cousin Jena piped up.  We received a few free beers for our trouble of coming all the way out to the brewery.  (Thank you to the lovely staff at Yuengling.)  We could still cross something off my list, and I had my lovely family members to help me out.

I pulled up my list and read through what I still needed to check off and we saw the perfect one.  We were pretty hungry, just got a few free beers in our bellies and I had some extra money in my pocket from selling some old CD's to Sound Exchange. This was the perfect time to buy a stranger a meal at a restaurant.  It was meant to be.  We also found out that they were not actually brewing beer today, so the tour would have been lack luster.  I guess I will have to get more free beers another day.

I decided that Monday was going to be my first day of the next 30 before 30 challenge, 'Go Vegetarian for a Month,' so what better meal than some good ole fashion BBQ.  We chose Hank's Catfish and BBQ to try a new spot and maybe make a stranger's day.

When we walked into the restaurant, the smokey aroma welcomed me up to the counter.  I looked around and saw only two other tables of people sitting at them, who have already paid for their meals.  Maybe today wasn't going to be a bucket list day after all.  We ordered our food and I decided to just give the cashier enough money to cover 2 people's meals and explained to him that the next people who come in to order food, that I wanted to pay for it.  He seemed to be caught off guard with my request, especially when he asked if I wanted to be recognized for it or if I was with any special group and I said absolutely not - just tell them to pay it forward and remember that there are still nice people in the world.  He smiled and thanked me.  

We took our seats to wait for our food while enjoying an ice cold PBR, when a older couple walked through the door.  Our table was close enough to the counter that we could hear the exchange.  As the couple was trying to decide what they wanted to order, the friendly cashier had a hard time holding back his grin with the information he was waiting to share with them.  After they placed their meal order, he shared with him that this meal was going to be on the house, thanks to the kindness of a stranger.  I couldn't tell who was more excited, the couple or the cashier that got to share the news.  It was a great feeling.  At the end of my meal, the nice employee came by with my change which promptly went back into his tip jar. 

A grainy photo of the couple placing their order.

It is amazing how things work out.  Because I took down the wrong information for the beer tour, I was able to make 3 strangers' days a little brighter.  Being able to watch from the background was a very surreal feeling and one I will never forget.  What made it even nicer was sharing it with some of the people I love the most.  It was a great reminder that everyday we control our destinies.  We choose what attitude we want to have, what impression we will make on others, and the activities that we do.  I am able to check this item off my bucket list with a smile and a happy heart.

No comments:

Post a Comment