There is nothing more saddening than the person in the drive thru that breaks the “pass it forward” chain. Not because they don’t have the means, but because they seem to not really care. I work at a Caribou drive thru location located incredibly close to a school and something like two blocks away from one of the most trafficked freeways in the state. That being said, this isn’t a post about the people who break a chain because they are selfish.
A woman came through my window this morning. She asked me how much the order of the person behind her was. It was inexpensive, less than five dollars, so she paid for it. She looked embarrassed doing it, then she told me that she just had a feeling that she should. Almost as if someone told her to do it. Anyways, she took her drink and drove off.
The person behind her couldn’t have been much older than me. When I told her that the woman before her had paid for her drink she looked on the verge of tears. This woman then asked how much the order behind her cost, this one was a little more expensive just shy of 8 dollars. She looked a little disheartened, but told me to try her card anyways even though she didn’t really know how much money she had. The system denied it.
Now, I could tell this woman felt guilty because she could not repay this stranger’s kindness in a way. I asked her not to feel bad. No one’s obligated to actually pass it on.
For all I know that woman would have had her card declined trying to pay for her drink. She didn’t seem to know exactly how much she had, and she would have been a lot more embarrassed had her card been declined attempting to pay for something she ordered (hell, I’ve been there it sucks). Instead, thanks to the kindness of one woman, she got her drink for free and saved almost five dollars for something else.
Some people might say that if she had no money she has no business going to a coffee shop for expensive espresso drinks, and while I suppose in some ways that’s true, it’s hard to say what her circumstances might have just been. Perhaps she’d been up all night because of a family crisis and had to go to work that morning.
Anyways, the moral of this story is try to be generous when it is financially, emotionally, and mentally possible for you to be (seriously don’t ever spread yourself too thin). You really never know who you might help doing it. Even if you don’t know that person. It can restore someone’s faith in humanity.