Thank You to Whoever Left Flowers on My Car in the Parking Lot of Ruler Foods in Newburgh
Ever feel like you are having deja vu? I've written this open letter before - well sort of. Back in 2015, when my daughter was a toddler, we had to pick up flowers to take to my niece's performance of The Nutcracker. My daughter was having a day and threw a humongous category 5 meltdown fit in Schnucks. I dropped the flowers and took my banshee child straight out to the car.
I was no stranger to category five meltdowns in stores but after a long and stressful holiday season, I was spent. There were plenty of tears and snot and exasperation from both of us. We sat in the Schnuck's parking lot while she continued to reenact a scene from The Exorcist. Just when I was about to completely lose my mind, a family gently tapped on my window and offered me the flowers I was going to purchase but had to leave behind. Then they took the time to make sure we were both okay.
I decided to write about this family's kindness and say thank you. I didn't know if they'd ever see it but I thought maybe their sweet expression would encourage others to meet strangers in their time of need with an act of kindness. The post went a little local viral and the family came forward. Turns out, the mom, Gina Scales, was my niece's teacher! We became Facebook official friends and recently she moved one street over from me! Listen - small town Newburgh - amiright?
Fast forward to today and once again I was surprised by flowers at a grocery store. On my way home from work, I popped into Ruler Foods in Newburgh to buy 15 bananas for my daughter's fall party at school tomorrow. I came out to my car and noticed something sitting on the hood.
They were beautiful Crazy Daisy Halloween flowers!
Okay, full disclosure, I totally searched my brain for any articles on human traffickers that use flowers to catch their victims off-guard and then kidnap them. (I can't help it - I'm an anxious person.) I came to the conclusion human traffickers don't use flowers and that the entire story was probably an urban legend. Nevertheless, I grabbed the absolutely adorable flowers and hopped in my car, and locked the door. I looked around - no cars that I recognize... Then I called my husband and thanked him. I had just complained to him that he NEVER buys me flowers anymore. Oh he listened! But, he played dumb. "What are you talking about? I'm in Princeton." A quick glance at Life360 confirmed he was indeed nowhere close to me.
Then I saw a note. Clearly, it was feminine handwriting and smelled like essential oil.
Neither my husband nor human traffickers are big into essential oils (that I know of).
The note read, "You are kind and I hope you have a great day."
Was it the woman that I didn't run over as she crossed from the store into the parking lot with her shopping cart full of groceries? I mean, that was pretty kind of me.
Was it Stephanie at the CVS Minute Clinic who just prescribed antibiotics for the infected scratch from a stray cat that I saved? That was also pretty kind of me to feed him and take him to animal control. Maybe she felt like I needed to know that.
Was it a friend - possibly even a neighbor - who saw my very distinct vehicle in the parking lot while she was at Starbucks and just happened to have an extra bouquet of flowers in the car?
Was it a total stranger who looked at me and thought - now that's a gal who needs some flowers! Hope she's not a serial killer!
I may never know.
Whoever she is - thank you. Thank you for your act of kindness on a rainy Thursday. In a world where there are so many sad stories, so many hard days, so many stressful situations - small acts of kindness go such a long way.
YOU MADE MY DAY! And I'll be paying the gesture forward very soon. Lookout Newburgh, who will be flowered with affection next?