Random Act Of Kindness - My Unbelievable Story
When I lived in Bermuda I think the apartment I lived in was smaller than the fifth wheel camper I have now for weekends away. Don’t get me wrong, it was a fabulous little apartment, but cooking in it wasn’t something I did in my apartment very often. Eating out every night was standard for me.
One night I was out at one of my favourite little Italian restaurants, Portofino. My date and I had just finished placing our order when a group of four people came into the restaurant and sat down at a corner table just to the left of me. I noticed them looking over at us. I didn’t think too much about it at that moment.
The waiter brought over a bottle of Dom Pérignon . I explained to the waiter that we did not order the bottle. After all, it was $350 on the menu and although I absolutely love champagne it was not something I would typically order. The waiter explained that someone in the restaurant had sent it to us as a gift. Although I knew a handful of people in the restaurant, I couldn’t image any of them sending us such an expensive bottle of champagne. The good news for me was that my date was not a drinker, so that meant I got this fabulous bottle of bubbly all to myself.
By watching the reactions of the people in the restaurant, it wasn’t too hard to determine that it was the group of four people that had sat off to my left. We didn’t know them, and didn’t know why they would send us this gift. We smiled, lifted a glass of champagne to toast to them a “thank you”. Realizing I would never be able to drink the whole bottle we asked the waiter to share some of the champagne with them.
Shortly afterwards, a round of desserts was delivered to the table. We didn’t order these either. The waiter sang me “Happy Birthday”. It wasn’t my birthday. Then came another round of desserts and another song. And then another round of desserts. If you are wondering, I was able to eat the first two rounds of desserts, they went very well with the champagne, but the third dessert I had to have boxed for home.
This was truly unbelievable. We wanted to know why this group of strangers were showering us with these indulgences. We managed to call over one of the women from the mysterious group. She told us that her boss had just taken his real estate company public in New York, and that this was how he celebrated his success. He would select a random person in a restaurant and shower them with indulgences from the menu. What a fabulous story, right? Well, it gets better.
The next night we went to another restaurant. This one was beach front at Cafe Lido, Elbow Beach. I had some friends visiting from Canada, so a group of 7 of us went to dinner that night. Unbelievably, we noticed in the restaurant that the same four generous strangers were in the same restaurant as we were. However, they had not noticed us. We decided to do something special for them. We wrote a really nice note, explaining how happy and special their act of kindness made us feel, and that we would pay that gift forward to someone else one day. We didn’t want to outdo their gift to us, thinking it would be in poor taste. Rather, what we did was ask our waiter to prepare a tray of every dessert on the menu and, along with our note, surprise the strangers with it.
We watched their reaction. We could see them laugh at the coincidence of being in the same restaurant as us. We could see their surprise as they received the tray of desserts and read the note. They had the waiter take their picture holding the note like it was a hard-earned diploma. You can not imagine what happened next. They sent the tray of desserts back to our table along with two bottles of champagne!
The same lady from the previous evening came over to our table to explain that “her boss loved the gesture, but he much prefers to give than receive”. My date said to the lady “thank you for choosing us, we have an incredible story to tell people, and we will pay this experience forward”. The lady said “you are most welcome, but I have to tell you that my boss chose her, not you”. Well, if the gifts of champagne and desserts were not enough to make me feel pretty special, this statement certainly put me over the moon!
This is my incredible story of being at the receiving end of a random act of kindness. My challenge to you is to make a point of doing a random act of kindness today, and leave a comment to inspire others.
P.S. Yes, I have made a point of paying it forward, and I’ll share that story another day.