I was fourth in line in the fifteen or less lane in the grocery store on Christmas Eve day, but for some reason, each transaction was slower than the last. A friend of the lady in front of me cut line with her groceries, saying to me, “I’m with her.” Fine, I thought, no biggie. Charity begins in the grocery store. After a few minutes, Ms. I’m-With-Her motioned to a large man with booze to join them, with nary a glance at me. I was a bit, shall we say, miffed? It had been a long day, my back ached and still the line wasn’t moving. My savior was a clerk who motioned me over to the empty self-check lanes. “Ma’am, I can ring you through over here.” This sympathetic woman gave me a figurative cup of cold water. She rang up my purchases, wishing me a “Merry Christmas.” I said, “You were my Christmas present today.” We lifted each other’s spirits. On the way home, I realized that her kindness, even though she was only doing her job, felt like the comfort one gets from hugging a teddy bear. I guess I wore the right socks today.
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