Monday, March 21, 2016
Flies & Vinegar
I didn't really care to go to the Post Office today. I still feel pretty awful, and my bones ache horribly. But the world is not gonna quit spinning just because my bones don't like me. I have stuff to do so I'm gonna keep moving along as far as I can for as long as I can, and I'm gonna plaster a smile on my face while I'm doing it.
When I got there, our tiny local PO Annex was packed. Seriously packed--almost as bad as at Christmas--and there were a couple of children in there. I hesitated and decided to wait outside the door for a few minutes because, hey, I've been ill. I do not believe that I am infectious but I still didn't want to pose an unnecessary risk in a small space.
While I was waiting at the door, making an effort to enjoy the sunny day, another lady came up and she was Obviously Not Happy. She had letters to mail; everybody who was already there was just in her way, and she was fixing to let them know it, too. I'm standing there, smiling, feeling like my bones are about to snap in half, and I thought that things just don't have to be like this, so I told the lady that there was no reason for both of us to wait. "Please, give me your letters; I'll be glad to mail them. If you feel uncomfortable leaving them with me, ask the clerk; she knows me, nearly everyone does, you can trust me."
And she said, "But everyone is nasty to me! No one is ever nice! Why would you do that?"
I said, "Just because I can. It's okay. Give me your letters, and then smile at the next person you see. Things will get better for you starting right this minute."
She protested all the way to her car about how mean people are but she left her letters with me. And I did as promised: I mailed her stuff before I gave my own to the clerk.
All the time I was waiting in line, and it was more than 20 minutes, I chatted with the nice people in line. We shared some laughs. And every so often the clerk looked over at me; she nodded and she smiled and she mouthed "thank you." I've seen how tough it is for the clerks when that tiny PO gets packed; I'll help out if I can just by smoothing over the atmosphere. It's something anyone could do. In fact, I believe that it's something everyone should do.
When I got back home, I had to check the eBay Answer Center for some seller information, and I swear that everyone who was posting had the same attitude that the Lady With the Letters did. Everyone was out to get them. All sellers were evil. All buyers were evil. eBay was the most evil thing ever.
Seriously? What is up with this attitude from everyone? If you act bad and you believe that others are bad at heart, guess what you're gonna get? Guess what sort of energy you are spreading to the world?
There was no point battling the question on the eBay Boards but I wish I could have explained to the Lady With the Letters. I don't think she wasn't ready to hear what I could have shared, though.
Life is not fair. Everybody has bad days. We can't change circumstances but we can make things nice for the people around us. It's not that hard to do. If we are kind, especially when we feel unhappy ourselves, we can make things better for others. That goodness comes back to us at some point, usually when we need it most.