Micheal Miller works for the dry cleaner/laundry service that we use. He drives the van to pick up then return Z-D’s dress shirts once they are clean and pressed with light starch. Nice guy, very reliable.
It’s my habit at the holidays to give a monetary tip to our laundry driver guy, who this year happens to be Micheal Miller. Thus I did that two weeks ago.
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Growing up I was the child of older conservative parents and was taught that one must always send a written thank you note to the gift giver upon receipt of a gift. This concept of proper behavior was ingrained in me to such a degree that for a few decades I judged people harshly who didn’t send a written thank you note.
It seemed like a slap in the face to me. Disrespectful, even.
Of course over the years society has morphed away from Emily Post expectations plus I’ve grown more forgiving. I don’t hold myself or other people to the high standards of my childhood. In fact, I’ve come to reevaluate what matters to me when I give a gift to anyone for whatever reason.
I’ve decided that I like the giving part more than the being thanked part. I do what I do because I think it’s important to do so, not so I will receive a written thank you note.
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Still, when I found a written thank you note pinned to an empty laundry bag hanging from the hook by the door on our front stoop, I was pleased to see it and said out loud to myself: “Micheal Miller has good manners.”
It was a sincere spontaneous remark. A blessing even.
One that put me in a happy place for the rest of the day as I mused on what seemed to me to be a random act of kindness, a throwback to a different era when a written thank you note was the done thing.
Such as this handwritten message of gratitude scribbled on a piece of paper by an almost stranger.
Who I appreciate very much.