-Blog post by Mary J., a Kindness Investor from Houston, TX
I met today’s recipient at Chik-fil-A in Pasadena, TX, while going through the drive-thru with Mom and Jack. Have you ever had their chicken sandwich? If an investor had approached me about a new restaurant whose feature item was a fried chicken breast with three pickles on a buttered bun, I would have laughed them out of the room. Now, I probably single-handedly keep the one on Fairmont Parkway in business. They’re sooooo good. And they make great iced tea; lemon, no sugar.
Chris T. was taking orders outside with a co-worker, trying to keep the growing line coiled around the building moving. After he took our order, I introduced myself and told him about the Kindness Investment project. He was very interested and said he’d be happy to talk to me, but didn’t have a lot of time right then to answer all my questions. I found out he’s working at the fast-food chicken chain while attending college.
I gave him the $10 and we agreed to talk later. He gave me his phone number and I left a message, but he hasn’t returned my call. I don’t want to hold up the blog, so if/when I hear from him I’ll post an update at that time.
Well, today is my final day of giving. It went by so fast! My week as a Kindness Investor was a great experience and one I highly recommend to others, unemployed or working. The project made me more aware of the many people who pass in and out and around my life every day, whom I never would have thought to talk to. The experience added a new dimension to giving.
I’m now looking forward to meeting the distinguished gentleman dressed in the cream suit who rides his bike near our home, the woman wearing scrubs who walks her young daughter to school every day, and of course, the streetperson with his right leg missing whom I’d planned to include in the project all week. I’m going to make more time to talk to people while waiting in lines, find out where they’re from, and really make a connection, even if for a few minutes. I truly believe the electricity generated from each connection made causes a ripple effect that can only add more kindness to the world.
In hindsight, the best lesson I learned is that it’s better to pick people who aren’t ‘on the job’ (D’Oh – seems so obvious NOW…). I thoroughly enjoyed meeting all the ‘investments’ this week, but I think the best interviews were with those I could spend more time with in a relaxed environment – Patricia and Marcos.
I haven’t contacted Patricia to follow up yet – she wants me to meet her daughter and see her great-grandmother’s picture, but Marcos has become a regular fixture at our house. We’re on his way home from school and he comes over to walk Jack, borrow books and use the computer. Turns out his mom makes AWESOME tamales from scratch, along with her own hot sauce, for $8 a dozen. I’m totally hooked. If anyone in the southeast Houston / Pasadena area wants some, please let me know and I’ll hook you up, too. Except for Mama Ninfa’s, they’re the best I’ve had outside of Mexico.