Someone makes you smileBy
What makes you smile? Have you ever really thought about that? Yeah, of course, rum makes Buck smile, a cold Corona will make me smile, but really, what makes you smile, what gives you a warm & fuzzy?
I shared a story somewhere online ages ago, but couldn’t locate it, and it falls into this category, of what makes me smile.
Leon makes me smile – he is a worker for Lake County Public Works Department in Northern Illinois, all I know about him is that.. his name and his job….. he works in the area where I grew up, where my parents still live and where I pass through on a weekly basis..
Leon is African American in a predominately white area, when he looks up from whatever task he is performing at the time, he has a smile and a wave for passing cars… I always made sure that I would honk my horn when I passed by, and his pearly whites would show through an ear to ear grin. A calloused hand would always flutter in the air.. until.. one day.. I was side by side with Leon, and he said.. to me..
“I am so sorry, I can no longer wave to you, someone called in and complained that I seemed “to friendly, it scared them, and if you don’t see me around here, it is because they are going to transfer me out of this area.”
I sat in my car as the light turned green..and couldn’t comprehend what Leon just told me.. I told him to please pull over so I could understand this.. that is when I learned his name…
My husband is a Public Works Employee.. and trust me, I have heard stories.. I would hope someone would give him the pleasantries of a smile and a wave.. so I had a bit of compassion for this situation. I wrote to the county, and I wrote from my heart, how asinine could that be, they would punish someone for doing his job as a public servant. Wouldn’t you much rather deal with a happy public servant, than one that’s copping an attitude..
Well.. Leon is still in the neighborhood, and after this, he asked me to pull over.. and explained the story, I carried a copy of the letter I wrote in my car for a few months, and I got to give it to him. I got a big hug, and a thank you… I saw Leon today, we passed in different directions.. but he made me smile..
His smile and his attitude is infectious, and as I drive through Leon’s territory, I always look forward to seeing his bright yellow truck and hearing a honk.. knowing, this person and I, even though we don’t know one another on a personal level, our lives have crossed and we find a smile.
As the sun sets tonight, think about… what makes you smile!