Wednesday, June 17, 2015

Making Everyone's Day Better

The truth is that I don't love going to Seattle.

I'm more of a suburb girl than a big city girl. I like big parking lots and Target. Not so much skinny one-way streets and a need to know how to parallel park. Which I don't. Also, I hate stopping at stoplights on giant hills where I am petrified that I am going to back into the person behind me when I switch my foot from the brake to the gas.

Also I'm usually lost.

And there are a lot of crazy people in big cities.  I don't mean "mildly crazy" like me.  I mean, actually crazy.

But, today, I needed to go to Seattle to work out something with my daughter's passport.  So, to Seattle, I went.  But, since I had to be there anyway, I decided I'd make a morning of it.  The plan was to do my business at the Passport Office and then walk down to Pike Place...and then walk back to go home.

Gratefully, the Passport part didn't take very long -- which left me in a pretty good mood.

It was at this point that I met the guy that started my project. He shoved his way out the door of the private side of the passport office, and smacked the elevator button while running his hands through his hair.

"Tough morning already?" I asked him tentatively.

He smiled at me tightly as we both got on the elevator. "Yeah. The side you came from is only half of it..."

"I'm sorry," I offered. "It's not your fault that we all procrastinated getting a passport till the last possible minute."  As the doors opened again, I patted him on the shoulder. "I hope your day gets better."

"Thanks," he said.  "No, I mean it.  Thanks."

And at that point, I decided I was just going to make everyone's day better. It was roughly a bazillion block walk from the passport office to Pike Place... and roughly the same distance back. So I decided I was going to find at least one person on every block and I was going to do something to make their day just the slightest bit happier.

I made a point to "see" the people asking for spare change.
I complimented lots of people on their hair, their outfits, the beautiful color of their shoes.
I smiled at a lot of people.
I said Hello to all the cops and security guards standing outside downtown buildings.
I made small talk with people at crosswalks.
And even just inserted myself into a conversation and reassured some random girl that no, she wasn't being irrational for being upset when people treat her like an idiot.

And you know what... Seattle wasn't so bad.

Also I found cool stuff!  Did you know that there's a waterfall there? And an old time fire engine museum? And that UPS was started there?

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