Today, we went to the store, ostensibly to buy a bunch of little colorful nonsense. While paying at the register, The Man asks the cashier if she is still in high school. No, she is at college. She is studying computer science. She is developing something… No, she is not studying right now. Oh, she has some health issues, so she is taking a break. She is only 21 and a beautiful Asian American lady.
Next to us, an old lady - with urgencies of her own no doubt - breaks our conversation of human relation, inquiring, “You are done?” No, we are not done yet. We are talking to the girl, making her job a little less machine-like and a little more human-like.
The we go to a restaurant and order food. The waitress is a beautiful young lady too. Not Asian, not anything distinguishable. The Man asks her again what does she study. She is studying astrophysics, oh, she loves it. And we listen to her and look into her bright eyes until someone calls the waitress. Water glasses are empty for the fourth time.
Every time that I buy something or I go to eat, I do remember my former jobs at a restaurant and at a register, and I try to be kind and human to the people at the register or bar, standing, listening, advising, smiling even if they are having a horrible day or a terrible foot ache or a bad boss.
So, please, old ladies that inquire if are we done, or you are so thirsty that you forget your humanity, please, be kind. Because all of us are here trying to survive. And maybe a simple smile makes the difference.