Monday, January 31, 2011

Been gone for a bit

I'll catch you up on the last two weeks - I have some new theories post our time in Hawaii.. Tonight - coming home from my first day back at work - cold, tired, ready to be done for the day.. I was sliding my way down our very non-shoveled/de-iced driveway at our condo complex swearing under my breath the entire time at building management and myself for wearing heels..
I look up, still swearing under my breath, and notice that one of my neighbors - a guy I don't even know very well, has now been standing at our front door for over two minutes, waiting for me to navigate my way down the slippery slope of death that is our driveway.
I looked at him and said "I'm slow - go on in" and he responded with a "I'm in no rush, take your time, just want to make sure you make it in ok tonight".
Random act of kindness that made my entire day better.

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Let it snow, let it snow, let it snow!

22.4 inches here in Hartford. I spent most of the day with dueling laptops, working my way through what was my last day before our long awaited vacation.. I plowed through the day, sending off power points, leaving last instructions, and watching the snow pile up like mad on my deck.

Made it through the day and the snow finally stopped... I made dinner for us and post dinner, instead of donning fuzzy jammies and slippers, M and I decided to go for a walk through our little winter wonderland of Downtown Hartford. Because I'd been inside all day, I really felt like I hadn't had the opportunity to even attempt a random act of kindness..

There really weren't people out on the streets.. A couple of restaurants managed to open.. People laughing and drinking inside the warm walls.. The city was almost totally all ours! We even got to walk down the middle of some of the streets. It was awesome. One of those nights when I love my little city..

After wandering around for a while, we decided to head home.. The sidewalks were pretty slippery, and as we rounded one of corners, we saw an elderly couple coming towards us. She was several steps ahead of her husband, and kept looking back over her shoulder, checking on him. He was walking down the sidewalk, clutching onto street signs and a cane in his other hand.

I asked him if I could offer him a hand. He looked so offended - it made me sad. This gentleman was no match for the sidewalk with its steep grade, yet he refused our help. I looked at M a bit helplessly, and we went on our way.. Singing christmas carols as we walked down our streets home..

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Delta airlines - ice storms and snow.

I didn't perform a random act of kindness today - but someone bestowed one on me. I was supposed to fly from Dallas where I was giving a speech, through Atlanta, to Hartford tonight. If any of you have been watching the news, you know that Atlanta was closed because of an ice storm..
Delta rebooked me through Detroit. All was fine until Detroit started getting freezing fog (yup, fog) and snow. My connection from Detroit to Hartford was cancelled. No hotels available within miles of the airport. The option they rebooked me for was to stay in Detroit over night and then fly to Cinci in the morning. Then keep your fingers crossed and we'll go from there.
One of the joys of traveling over 150,000 miles a year is that you get status on airlines you are loyal to. I'm Diamond. That's the cream of the crop for Delta. If any of you have seen Up in the Air, I am the female version of George Clooney.
Anyhoo - called the uber-special-Diamond line where they answer their calls with "thank you for your loyalty"... This woman, named Kathy, who has the best laugh I've ever heard literally walked me (while I ran) through the Detroit airport and got me on a flight that was sold out and I shouldn't have been able to get on. I'm not sure how, and I don't even want to know, but this woman, who doesn't know me at all, stayed on the phone with me for over 25 minutes, working with a super bitch, yup, I said it, gate agent and GOT ME ON THAT PLANE.
It was the last plane that landed in Hartford tonight. We're expecting something like 14 inches of snow between tonight and Wednesday evening.
This woman got me home. And she did it because I really needed to get home. And she knew it.
Random act of kindness.

Monday, January 10, 2011

Buy a little coffee..

When I lived in Minneapolis, years ago, I used to go through a caribou coffee drive thru every single morning. I knew all of the employees there and had a habit of, once a week, buying the coffee for the stranger behind me in line. I'd throw an extra five dollars in - and these guys would always surprise the person behind me.

Today, at the Hartford airport, I bought coffee for the person in line behind me. She was an airport employee and by the look on her face, you'd think she'd won the lottery. It was less than $2.00 out of my pocket, and I truly believe it changed her day.

That - and that fact that although I don't have my caribou coffee drive thru anymore - I do have dunkin donuts employees at the bradley airport who know what I drink. Guess I travel too much. ;)

What was your random act today?

Sunday, January 9, 2011

The joys of facebook.

Yesterday, I changed my status to this:

I much prefer random acts of kindness to senseless acts of violence.

This morning, as I sit in my comfy leather chair and watch hours after hours of coverage on the shooting rampage in Arizona, I find myself with tears streaming down my face. I usually only cry at good comedians..

On National Pay it Forward Day, in December, I happened to be in New York. I was supposed to go have a fancy dinner with a bunch of executives at a fancy restaurant. It had been a long commute to the city that day, so I bowed out of dinner.

Instead, I decided I wanted to go for a walk. As a wandered the streets of the city, I stopped into one of my favorite pizza places for a slice. I sat at the counter, eating my slice and thinking to myself about how lucky I am.

I went back up to the ordering counter and ordered 5 slices of pizza, asking the guy to wrap each one individually.. I walked the block to Bryant Park and started handed out slices to the homeless that sleep there at night.

Random act of kindness.

Saturday, January 8, 2011

Today is the day

Today, we witnessed a senseless act of violence and I decided that I could use my voice to talk about kindness -  and the good that I see each and every day. So today I start. Today I start sharing an act of kindness a day and hopefully - you will share yours too.

We're all human. We're all people. We may have different beliefs and views - but at the end of the day, we're all human. And I, for one, would like to officially declare that I much prefer random acts of kindness to senseless acts of violence.