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A stranger’s kind words make a difference

One day a couple weeks ago ‘ I think it was Monday evening, no, I know it was Monday evening because it was Valentine’s Day ‘ as I was working at my other place of employment, Wal-Mart Supercenter in Corydon, I was in the Domestics Dept., straightening up the rugs (zoning as they call it at Wal-Mart). A nice man, a stranger, stopped to talk.
He told me he was a widower. He talked about dating and how rude people can be by asking questions that are no one’s concern, and how first dates especially are not the time for these kind of questions. As we talked, and I continued to fold rugs and place them on the shelves, the conversation ended up on how people make messes when they don’t have to clean up after themselves. And it isn’t just the younger generation. I stopped what I was doing, looked up at him, smiled, nodded and agreed.
Looking down the aisles of the department, it looked like the place had been ransacked. Of course, it was Valentine’s Day, too ‘ real busy. The aisle I was in had rugs on the floor. Someone had just thrown them down and not picked them up. OK, some would say that’s what the employees are paid to do.
The customer noticed how hard I was working (maybe it was the sweat on my brow) to clean up the disarray. He didn’t seem to mind that I kept working as we talked.
When he began on the subject about how people just don’t pick up after themselves, and how it used to be that you were taught to put things back the same way you found them, again I looked up at him. A big smile on my face ‘ I had to agree with him again.
As a child, I was taught that if you touch something and it breaks, you were responsible and had to pay for it. In most stores back then, signs were posted and said that. You often saw young children with their hands in their pockets or holding on to the cart, to avoid touching anything. I also remember hearing my parents tell me, ‘Don’t touch it!’ I didn’t dare pull something off the shelf and leave it on the floor. I knew better; I knew there would be consequences when I got home.
Times have changed.
Our conversation went on for maybe five to 10 minutes; time flies when you’re having fun.
By the time our conversation had ended, I was only midway through the first aisle of rugs, and he was ready to go on his way to finish his shopping. He looked at me and said something like, ‘I really do appreciate the effort you put into making the shelves and store look nice.’ I looked at him, smiled and thanked him, and he was on his way.
As I continued to work that evening, I kept thinking about that conversation, and I smiled. I’m sorry I didn’t get his name. He probably doesn’t know how much he brightened my hectic evening with just a few kind words.
Thank you!
It really is nice to hear that there are people who appreciate what the employees at Wal-Mart do.