It’s a New Day,
And this is the story about a medium-sized town.
And how everything, eventually makes its way around.
It’s a story about a waitress, who works in a café.
A story about crotchety Bob, who works the toll booth all day.
A story about the mechanic, he’ll fix your car if it gets wrecked.
A story about the cleaner, a girl, me, and a butterfly effect.
You see I live across the river, up on the hill.
So every day I come across and pay the toll bill.
It’s a dollar seventy five and you’ve got to have exact change.
Bob won’t take a penny less or more, it’s so very strange.
And every once in a while, I don’t have exactly a dollar seventy five.
And he makes me turn around and all the way home, drive.
Anyway, that’s crotchety Bob; it’s just the way he is.
For him, the toll booth is serious biz.
I mean, there is nothing, nothing you could do.
I’ve tried to reason with him, but he just would never let me through.
Anyway, one day at lunch Charlotte was my server.
It doesn’t take a genius; you don’t have to be a keen observer.
To see that Charlotte puts her heart into what she does.
She’s present, real, attentive, she works hard...just because.
I only know her name from her name tag.
But suddenly I felt an impulse, while she wiped a table with a rag.
It was kinda out of character, I couldn’t believe what I said.
As the words left my mouth, while the thoughts filled my head.
Normally, such compliments wouldn’t leave my lip.
“Charlotte, you’re an outstanding server and I don’t think it’s for a tip!
You’re present, pleasant, sincere and kind.
It seems you can almost read our mind.
As you refill our cups and clear plates with a smile.
I just want you to know, I’ve noticed, you go the extra mile.”
And that’s all I said. I didn’t know who I was.
I just felt like I should tell her, just because.
Well, she beamed, she paused, and I think a tear welled up in her eye.
She said, “You have no idea, thank you. How about a free piece of pie?”
Well, the next day, on the way back, past the toll.
I reached in my pocket and I found a little hole.
I had the perfect change, but it must have fallen through.
Oh no, I don’t have time for this, what am I going to do?
There was Bob. I said, “I’m turning around, I’m short by a dime.”
He said, “Well, that’s OK, don’t worry about it. I’ll get it this time.”
I was shocked as I pulled through, I didn’t know what to say.
I yelled, “Why?” out my window, as I quickly pulled away.
Now I know this may sound odd, but before I got too far,
I swear he yelled back, “Because the mechanic fixed my car.”
I don’t get it, I don’t understand, that’s what mechanics do.
How does that relate to the miracle of him letting me through?
I couldn’t get it off my mind, so at lunch I did some snooping.
I went to see the mechanic whose pants were slightly drooping.
I said “Do you know a guy named Bob, who works at the toll.”
He said “Yeah I fixed his car yesterday; the steering was a little out of control.
“It was a hard fix, and when I handed him the invoice,
“He said he was a little short, did he have any other choice?
“I don’t normally do this but I threw the invoice in the trash.”
And said “Well, take the car and pay the rest when you get the cash”
“Why did you make an exception?” I said as he thoughtfully scratched his nose.
He said “I guess, well, because, the cleaner cleaned my clothes.”
So I went to the cleaners, and asked if he knew the mechanic named Jake.
“Yes I know him. I cleaned his clothes, even though it was his mistake.”
“He picked up his laundry, then got a call, some mechanical emergency.
So he went back to the garage and laid down the clothes very haphazardly.”
“And while working under a car, the oil pan somehow fell out.
And oil stained his wife’s favorite dress which is impossible to get out.”
“But I used every trick, every Laundromat secret, and I got out the oil stain.
Anyone else who would attempt such a thing would surely try in vain.”
“He said I saved his marriage, saved his day, and even saved his life.”
He said “Can you do me one more favor and not mention this to my wife?”
“I’m not sure why I worked so hard to clean his wife’s dress.
Maybe it was the little girl who was giving away flowers, could be…I guess.”
She said she was giving a wild flower to everyone in town.
There she is now, across the street, still making her rounds.
She was even giving flowers to strangers, just passing through.
Each one surprised and delighted as they said “Why thank you!”
So I asked the girl why was she picking and giving wild flowers away.
She said “Because some stranger made my mom so happy yesterday.”
“I don’t know who it is, so if I give one to everyone.
Then that person will eventually get a flower before I’m done.”
“It’s a hard time for her, see my daddy’s up in heaven.
He went a year ago yesterday, his name is Kevin.”
“Where is your mommy?” I asked. “She works here in this café.”
And she pointed through the window to Charlotte, from yesterday.
And right then I knew, why Bob let me through. I had solved the mystery.
He doesn’t know it, and who would have thought it started here with me?
I noticed Charlotte’s presence, and I told her so.
Which filled her heart so much her daughter noticed the glow.
So, she gave a flower to the Cleaner, who then cleaned the mechanics wife’s dress.
Who fixed crotchety Bob’s car for a little less.
Who then paid for my toll, the extra dime.
Right when I needed it most, when I was running out of time.
Or maybe it began with Charlotte, with her presence, her open heart.
Which inspired me to speak the truth so the ripple effect could start.
We have so much power to make a day holy, when we make the choice.
To behold the light of another being, to follow through with that inner voice.
When I turned on the news this morning, right at the top of the hour.
It seems that all over the nation, people are passing around wild flowers.
They're wondering where it all started, nobody in the country knows.
As this phenomena across the nation continues to move and grows.
It's utterly crazy, I think to myself, as my morning coffee swirled.
It’s reached beyond the bounds of this little town. It’s now changing the world!
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