Dear Random Guy at the Travel Plaza,

We interacted for a total of about twenty seconds, so I’m sorry if this note is short.  I was always taught that I should hold the door for the person(s) walking in after me.  Apparently you were taught the same; your parents raised you well.  A lot of people, however, I’ve found, will hold the door.  One of the perks of going to a Christian school is I can probably count on one hand the number of doors I’ve opened for myself.  (Okay, that’s a bit of an exaggeration.  Hyperbole, if you will.  It got a point across.)  Then there’s always the split-second judgment of whether or not someone is close enough to hold the door for him or her, then the awkward walk-jog of gratitude that happens after a misjudgment.  But, I digress.

I don’t remember what state I was in, but when you held the door for me I was grateful.  I was surprised, however, when you told me you liked my shirt.  I was most likely on a road trip–we were at a travel plaza, after all–so I obviously wasn’t dressed my best.  But I appreciated the compliment all the same.  You sounded so sincere.

The thing about our interaction, my dear mystery gentleman, was that you made me think.  I was a complete stranger, we’d probably never see each other again; it would have been easier for you not to say anything.  It made my day that you chose to speak.  You inspired me.  From that moment, you inspired me to give compliments when I see something worthy of complimenting, or even when I just see someone who looks like he’s having a bad day.  Normally, I would never open my mouth, especially to a complete stranger.  This little shy girl is perfectly happy in her own little world.  But you changed my mindset.  So thank you.  Thank you a hundred times over.

I suppose that “pay it forward” thing really does work.  I can only hope that I inspired at least one person the way that you inspired me.  Never stop being awesome.


A Flattered and Inspired Little Introvert


1 thought on “Dear Random Guy at the Travel Plaza,”

  1. Great post! A small compliment or even a smile can go a long way to brighten the life of someone. Then like you, that person will spread the same love to others and the domino effect keeps going. 🙂

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