Acts of Kindness Again

December has rolled around once again. I must say that I enjoy Thanksgiving much more than Christmas. To me it has all of the best qualities of Christmas without the added pressure of finding the perfect gifts and going into debt. I hate shopping. I hate malls. I hate crowds. I hate people who are grumpy because they missed out on buying more “stuff”. What do I love about Christmas?  The sparkly lights. The smell of baking. The fireplace.  Music and the feeling that I get when I make someone happy: but not the relentless commercialism and the January credit card bill.

Yesterday I was at my favorite home away from home: the Starbucks drive through. I have good karma at this particular Starbucks drive through. This was the one where the car in front of me saw me sobbing in the darkness after seeing BOTFA the first time, grieving the deaths of Thorin, Fili and Kili. I pulled up to the window only to find the car ahead of me had paid for my drink. In fact, I have had a number of drive though “pay-it-forward” events at this particular Starbucks. Last Christmas I was number 36 in a chain of cars paying for the drinks in cars behind them. I didn’t break the chain (it happened three different times!)

I’ve been feeling poorly for the last few days, but yesterday I ventured out for a chai tea latte. Sitting across the parking lot was a young homeless veteran with a sign. I told the barista to charge a peppermint latte to my card and take it out to him. She was brightened up at the idea and said she would take it out herself. Today, there was a different homeless person there. I did the same thing.

The baristas know me now. I’m the lady who buys warm drinks for the homeless. I’m hoping my Starbucks will start doing it on their own. It’s not like they don’t make money hand over fist, and a warm beverage is a small bit of cheer for someone with nothing.

So. Richard Armitage? Here’s your Christmas present from me. A Christmas countdown of acts of kindness.

And, gentle readers, if you feel up to it, join in. Share here, or elsewhere,  or keep it between you and the universe, but join in if you can. There is a lot of crap going on in the world that we can do little about, but we can do a little bit to make things better wherever we are now.

Cheers.

 


7 thoughts on “Acts of Kindness Again

  1. Aw, this is absolutely beautiful!! Thanks for sharing!
    And I’m with you on the Chai Tea Latte, love that. It’s the only reason I go to Starbucks as I don’t like coffee. 🙂

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  2. Perfect timing for an act of kindness in this season.
    I have never heard of this practice of “paying behind” – and what a great idea it is. I think I might do that the next time I find myself standing alone in a coffee shop, just for the fun of it. Have to trust the shop to actually do it, though…

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  3. I hope you’re feeling better. Rough time of year to feel poorly.

    re: Sbux — the ones that I have frequented, anyway (I have a “special relationship” with three stores) have donated their markouts that are donatable (not all retail food is) each evening to a local charity. You could ask to talk to the store manager and suggest that they do that if they are not doing so. As far as people taking coffee to homeless people themselves — for the individual baristas, the partner benefit they get (free drink / food item) is often part of their informal food budget themselves. Sbux does treat its employees better than a lot of fast food outlets, but the baristas also get a regular markout of coffee and I know several who resell them because they need the money.

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  4. I had a friend who’s sister was a barista. Every now and then I’d get a free pound of coffee passed on to me. That was how I learned that sbuxs Blonde was too bland for my taste. I know they treat theoir employees well. Even part timers get benefits. As corporations go, they are fairly ethical.

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  5. Well, they changed the “parttimers get benefits” rule a few years ago. If you work a certain number of hours, you get benefits, but they limit the number of employees per store who are allowed to work that many hours (based on gross sales). Still better than nothing, I agree.

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