Day 37 of Campaign Smile was noteworthy because I passed the 100 smile mark but that was expected. However, I was not ready for the bountiful supply of smiles that I received all day. Today provided me a lot of opportunities in the smile campaign since, as a rare occurrence I was not working, my wife was and I had a car with no errands all day. While I would have loved to spend the day with my wife I wound up interacting with a lot of people as I travelled around trying to keep myself busy.
1. I started the day at the pharmacy picking up a prescription. No they were not my happy pills. I manage that attitude all on my own. They were for the dog. While the pharmacist was efficient and friendly she managed to talk with me the whole time and not return my smile.
2. On my way out the door, though, I passed another patron who not only smiled back at me but greeted me with a friendly, “good morning.”
3. I took myself next to a park near a lake to relax and read for a while. As I walked toward one of the benches I was basking in the glory of nature around me as I looked around and smiled. I turned my head back to see a woman walking for exercise as she was nearly passed me. She had already seen my smile and was trying to keep her smile to herself as she neared me. I don’t know if she was laughing with me or at my exuberance over the natural surroundings. I do know that I don’t care which it was, as long as it was there. She was a perfect example of what I am striving for. While it is great when someone smiles back at me immediately, my greater hope is for the chain reaction. Maybe they smile at me and maybe not. When they meet another, though, they might smile at them and pass it on. The odds, however, are even more likely that they will simply still be smiling after meeting me and the next person, like this woman, will feel compelled to smile. And so it goes…
4. I had found my seat and was doing my best to read and still pay attention to the people passing by my bench. One remarkable young man who seemed to be challenged in some way not only met my smile but asked, “What’s up?”, high-fived me, asked about my book and wished me a good day before moving on. It is just inspiring to see that open, loving approach to life and people.
5. When I stopped for lunch at Long John Silver’s the man running the register revealed a large, toothy smile to meet mine. I have seen running the register almost any time I come in there for lunch for several years now and he always has that infectious, happy attitude.
6. I stopped later for a drink at a convenience store and smiled at a woman leaving the store as I entered. She reciprocated with a very natural smile that you could tell was something she enjoyed wearing.
7. When I reached the register with my purchases the cashier was poring over some paperwork and seemed very worn by her task. She did, still, grant me a stressed, exasperated smile. That interaction was bound to help buoy her spirits.
8. When I was entering the library I passed a grandmother and her grandson who was obviously wearing her out. She flashed me a tired smile, all the same.
9. As I left the library a little bit later I saw one of the librarians just leaving the building by another exit. You could tell the end of her shift was giving her an emotional lift and she had a smile to match that attitude.