Okay, so on Friday, I had an eye doctor appointment in a neighboring town about an hour away from where I now live. One day before, I received a call from their office saying they hadn’t received my referral authorization yet. This was news to me. So, I called my primary doctor in a “let’s not panic” mode. It wasn’t that I couldn’t reschedule my eye appointment because, if I had to, I could and would do that. But in my mind, I had planned my whole day around this appointment – in the neighboring town one hour away. Sure, I could do my errands in a closer, oh, about thirty minutes away – neighboring town. But I didn’t want to. In the end, it all worked out. On the morning of, I was on my way without delay.
I started out with a selfie, knowing full well a haircut was on my list of things to do, and knowing I could post a “before” and “after” on my Snapchat and Instagram. Did I? I started out great with the photos. But I’ll have to admit, even though I did take a selfie of the after, I think I forgot to post it both places. What’s new, right? Good intentions. But in the end, it all works out anyhow.
So, what did I do? And what did I learn on my one-day outing all by myself an hour away from home? I learned about kindness, and how it’s still alive in the world we live in, out there in the air – every day, everywhere. Let me explain.
I arrived in time for my appointment. The staff were so friendly. And so timely, too. Everyone was so nice. The front desk clerks; the assistants; the doctor; and the billing clerk who checks a person out at the end. And everyone loved my mustard-colored jacket. Win-win!
Before I departed, I asked the last clerk if she knew of a hairstylist in the area. She apologized, saying everyone in the office live in the city and drive to town, and she offered to give me the name of her stylist in the city. But as I wasn’t sure when I’d be in the city again, I thanked her for her kindness. We both wished each other a Merry Christmas.
Once I was back in my truck, I called hubs and gave him my results. And, yes, I was driving around with my right eye dilated. Thankfully, it was an overcast day and I had my trusty sunglasses, so I was able to drive around only half lop-sided, lol.
On my way in search of a hair place, I stopped at the bank but had to go in as the ATM was being serviced. The teller was young and cute and sweet. She noticed and liked that my debit card was created with a camera on it. She asked if I was a photographer. I told her I’m an amateur dabbler of nature photos and am considering refocusing my writing based on the photos I love to take and share. She seemed quite pleased. We wished each other Merry Christmas and she went on to help the next customer as I smiled my way out the door.
Next, I tried finding Hair Expressions, but that place is now an indoor emporium. I would have gone inside and browsed or did some shopping, but I was getting hungry. So, my next stop was Starbucks. As I waited for my order, I asked the cashier if she was a local. And she said, sure, what’s up? I told her I was looking for a good hairstylist. She recommended Hair & Co. on the other side of HEB opposite Church’s Chicken. I was not to be disappointed. Jen did a great job of fixing me up and making me look like my spectacular self. Just kidding! But I do like to look good. Who doesn’t, right?
From there, I went in search of the city park to walk for a while, however, I thought I was lost. You know how those GPS aren’t always quite right?! And so, I detoured back to the Finders Keepers Market, an indoor resale shop, which I had spotted along the way. What a cute little place! I’ll have to take a sister or friend there sometime. My happy find: two beautiful Christmas gifts for someone’s prayer table.
While checking out and chatting, it turns out that I was on the right trek to the park. The owners explained to me the easiest way to get there. I thanked them for their kindness. And so, I tried it again. This time going down as far as town square before making my right. I was blessed with getting to snap a photo of the courthouse’s magnificent Christmas tree. I found the park, and when I looked up, I saw the other side where I had been before. Funny, how we question our ability to find things (and the accuracy of a GPS, lol).
I debated getting out to walk but noticed the time and thought I’d better get on to shopping. With a stop at Walmart and then HEB for groceries, I’d be driving back in the dark. Sure enough, I spent two hours in Walmart. In addition to getting the personal products I needed, I decided to do some Christmas shopping. I mean, why give Amazon all the business, right? I was so happy to find a lot of the things I wanted to get and would have stayed longer, but I really needed to get on the road. So, off to HEB, I went.
Now, I’ve been in a lot of HEBs, but I’d have to say this one is by far one of my favorites. It’s huge. It’s inviting. It seems organized and laid out just about right. I would have stayed longer here, too, but I was pushing the time. It would be dark soon, and I don’t see very well in the dark. Speaking of, my eye doctor appointment from earlier went really well. The specialist says my dry eyes are looking good, and he doesn’t want to see me for another whole year. How about that? I was definitely pleased with that news!
And so, what did I learn from and about my day? That there is a lot of kindness out there. From the medical staff, bank tellers, and Starbucks’ employees to the hair salon, Walmart clerks, and HEB partners, kindness was everywhere. It warmed my heart and made me smile. All I could think was how I wanted to share this with my readers. I was moved by the thought that this town, bigger than mine but smaller than the city north of them, had the idea right. In the effort to spread some holiday cheer, the extra smiles were touching me where i needed it most. Could it be as simple as just being kind to all we meet?
Whatever is the case, I hope you find your Christmas shopping to be wrapped up in the kindness of the season. As we hustle and bustle about making plans, wrapping gifts, and attending events, may we take time, just slow down a bit, to enjoy the season. Go with the flow, but take that walk (I know, I should have!). Do the unexpected. Consider the reason for the season. Invite a friend to enjoy the lights with you – whether you walk the sidewalks together or take a bundled up drive with some hot cocoa. Take time to soak up the atmosphere of joy and peace in the air.
And let’s pray for those who don’t have it so good. Those who have lost a loved one. Those who cannot make it home for the festivities. Those who suffer in some way that prevent them from enjoying the season as we can and do. We all have our own path, but we can spread cheer even in the smallest of ways. Just by being kind here and there. What is one way we can spread more kindness into the holiday air this season?
Love & hugs, Virg