Had a gentleman come into Bedford for lunch today whom I haven’t seen since my transfer from Laconia. His name is Larry. He is a WWII Veteran who served as a member of the United States Navy Seabees. I always had a great time talking to him and finding out what the Seabees did first hand from a man who was there. My interest is due to the fact that my grandfather served as a Seabee as well. Larry always gives me a hard time as I do not know my grandfather’s service information or what company he served with. Once again today he gave me a hard time again. It was so nice catching up with him. I bought his lunch as well as his daughter’s and gave them a Pay It Forward certificate to give to someone else. He was very grateful and gave me a hug on his way out. It’s always awesome to see regulars I haven’t seen in a while.
I had a woman come in tonight with her two young boys. The two boys had spent the whole day helping out with Toy For Tots, where they unloaded boxes of toys and set them up on display for other children to pick from. I told the young boys that it is great to see them doing something so nice for others around the holiday. Because of their hard work, I chose them to be my Random Act of Kindness for the week and gave them a Gift Certificate for a future visit. I then gave them a Pay It Forward certificate so they could continue to spread the holiday cheer.
A dad came in with two of his kids after a very long day looking exhausted and at the end of his patience. It was his first time visiting one of our establishments and he was very impressed with one of our servers, Jenny. We told him about our Random Acts of Kindness program and selected him as that day’s recipient. I think we made a new lifelong guest!
Tonight a bar customer came in and ordered a French Onion Soup and a C.B.C. Upon cashing out, his card was declined and he was incredibly embarrassed. He let me know if he knew he would have never dined. His CC was pending a $50 payment he was going to dispute with his financial institution tomorrow. He offered to pay with a check but had no other form of payment. I told him about our Random Act of Kindness program and he was not only relieved but grateful. I said hey things happen and I’m glad iIcould surprise him with this program and let him pay forward our kindness with his RAK. His priceless expression and shock was worth it. I wished him a Merry Christmas and sent him on his way feeling humbled by our generosity.
While shopping at Toys “R” Us on Monday I brought along a stack of RAK’s to randomly hand out. I gave each employee one to give to someone shopping in the store. It was great to see them going up to random people and giving them a little piece of holiday cheer (on a messy, snowy day no less!). We even recognized the staff who helped ring up the almost $20K in toys! Merry Christmas all!
The other day we had a guest come in with one arm in a sling. I noticed him and went over to chat as he is a frequent late night guest to our dining room. Turns out he had surgery to have a stent put into his heart earlier that day and after being released from the hospital he only wanted to eat at our very own Derry T-BONES! I told him I loved that he was here and wished him well on his journey to new health habits to avoid further surgeries and compilations. We honored his dedication to T-BONES by making him the daily RAK recipient. He was overwhelmed with gratitude and I look forward to hearing his RAK story as he pays his kindness forward.
Had a couple of ladies come in for lunch and redeem some old school gift certificates circa 1988, still in mint condition! For those that don’t know, there was a machine that we had to slide levers up and down to create the amount of the certificate. Then you had to pull a handle to put the imprint on the paper: For. Every. Single. One. Very labor intensive as you may imagine! Managers even had to put their signature on each one, except they could use a stamp. Beth’s were on these. We had a hard time believing there were still some of these in existence. As a token of appreciation, I gave the ladies one of our “newer” certificates to use in the near future.
Had a mother and daughter come in for lunch. They were out shopping together for holiday gifts and decided to come in to T-BONES to refuel. Johanna was their server. They all got to talking and the women brought up the fact this time of the year is hard on them as they had lost their husband/father just before Christmas one year. They began all sharing stories and laughing and crying together. Johanna approached me with the idea to do a Random Act of Kindness for these two ladies. I went over and explained that Johanna had shared their story with me and that I would like to give them a gift certificate to come back and join the T-BONES family and Johanna again and have something on us. They were very appreciative and couldn’t stop smiling. I gave them a Pay It Forward as well so they could do the same for someone else.
We had a couple of staff members call in dealing with the death of one grandmother and the impending death of another, both very sad events especially getting so close to Christmas. This got me nostalgic, thinking of my grandmother and the impending holidays. Then I noticed a single elderly lady dining with us that reminded me a lot of my grandmother. When she finished her meal, I asked if I could sit down with her for a moment. I told her about our staff members and their situations, along with mine. I also told her that I was going to take care of her meal today and give her a certificate to come back on another day. She was very touched, grabbed my hand, and said thank you. Then I gave her the pay it forward certificate and asked her to pass it along. She said she lived in a senior home and would find someone to give it to and make their day. I hope to see her soon.