Yesterday we needed to go to Costco, one of the big box bulk supply stores, to get household necessities like toilet paper, vinegar, and pickles. You'd be surprised by the amount of pickles a 13 year old can put away.
We opted to all go and take Max in with us, when he and I will usually sit in the car while Steve runs in. It was fairly uncrowded, and knowing the weather was about to turn cold, we wanted to get him out before the cold socks us in for a few days.
We hurried through, and zipped Max around the cold room at lightening speed. His favorite thing about Costco is freezing in the refrigerated room where the fruit is stored.
As we were leaving, the lines were forever long, so Max and I scooted around and sat at the little cafe area to wait on Steve to make it through the line. While sitting there, a dad and son stopped in front of us, not really recognizing we were sitting there. The dad took the receipt from his toddler son's hand quickly. He was a burly looking man with a gruff voice. He took the receipt and made it whistle between his lips. This cracked his son up, and cracked a smile on the rough looking man's face. It also made Max giggle. The man turned and looked at us, aware for the first time of his audience and smiled at Max, then walked on.
A short time later, a gangly teenager with his mom were passing by. The young man mumbles something to his mom, as he points towards Max with his pointy elbow. His mom turns and says, "Hi Buddy!". The both smile, and they kept on walking.
We finally met Steve and our huge basket of pickles and toilet paper to leave. Walking out of the store, I got a pat on my back. A proper "good job" pat on the back, with a professional looking older woman telling me, "You've sure got a good looking guy there.". A lovely smile, and she walked on.
All of these people, just took a moment. Less than 30 seconds, each of them, to share kindness. It took no extra time out of their busy evenings. They were all on their way to somewhere else, all on the move. But, the few seconds they took to acknowledge Max were so important. We know that Max knows so much, so I have to believe that it's appreciated by him as well to be acknowledged by people who are strangers to him. I know it always does my heart good. So, thank you kind people of Costco. You've made the 'burbs a little friendlier with your kindness.