Giving What I Did Not Get


I think I am not the only human who stresses out about whether I am using my life well.

There is this hamster wheel rolling in my pesky brain

With me as generator

Endlessly on the quest

For the “rightest”

Of right action.

Gotta write my book, exercise, clean my desk, do all the “to-do” stuff.

Yesterday evening Santa Fe had the clearest blue violet umbrella of a sky.

I took myself to my favorite outdoor patio for a light dinner.

My server was Ian.

He introduced himself with a flat affect; pleasant but dis-engaged somehow.

A large table of folks were seated near me and we were the only patrons.

It was easy to hear Ian interact as he took food and drink orders.

He extended himself far beyond the call of duty

Kindly answering questions like: “What is the size of the tortilla?” and “Is your tap water safe to drink?”

I was dehydrated and he kept his eye on the disappearing act of my Arnold Palmer glass.

When the bill came I said: “ are really good at your job. I’ve listened to you all evening and you are kind, capable and unobtrusive. You are elegant in your serving style and I just wanted to tell you.”

His demeanor moved from the flat affect to the hidden blooming man waiting just underneath his “work-mode” skin.

Ian seemed quite overcome by my comments and thanked me profusely as he now moved around the restaurant with the nobility of a king.

I rolled away so taken by how affected he was by my simple acknowledgement.

After all is said and done my sense is that


The hamster wheel is pretty much beside the point.

Next time you find yourself thinking a good thing about someone


Out loud so you both can hear it.

We are all so hungry.

And easy to feed.


photo credit- Gay Block



5 Responses to “Giving What I Did Not Get”

  1. Jennifer on September 12th, 2018

    This is SO true! What a gift you gave him. Glad he was able to receive it

  2. Jenny on September 12th, 2018

    Oh yes , such deeply good sense . And that we are all hungry and so easy to feed.

  3. Carole Zoom on September 13th, 2018

    I love complimenting folks when they least expect it! Great post.

  4. Becky Patterson on September 14th, 2018

    Kind. Capable. Elegant. What exact true words. Simple but powerful . I do that everywhere I go. Dish out notices or comments like handing out chocolates. Walking across the walkway to grocery store passing a woman going opposite way I tell her what great colors she’s wearing. She says oh thank you. I needed that today. Split second passerby notice, compliment, gratitude taken. Yes Cathy that’s our purpose. To relate to
    our fellow occupants on the globe. I love your beautiful hands. What wisdom they hold and perform miracles stretching beyond their capability. And Emma’s little ever present nose in the corner.
    I would’ve felt alone and self conscious sitting there. You pushed out of yourself and blessed someone else. That IS OUR PURPOSE I
    Love you ?

  5. Becky Patterson on September 14th, 2018

    …. And YOU rolled away like a queen . Put your crown on the back
    Of your chair again probably needs polishing up.
    PS. The ? Ending I LOVE YOU was a moji kiss. Guess it gets interpreted that way. But I love you!!

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