I just wanted to share a little experience I had today.
I phoned a taxi after work, (I work in a bar/restaurant in Glasgow’s west end called Velvet Elvis) to my home in Paisley, which is a good 10/15 minute car journey depending on the route.
The taxi arrives and I get in, always hoping for friendly chatty taxi drivers, before I’d even got fully into the car, this driver says ‘How you doin’?!’ in such a friendly way that makes me very pleased.
I get in, tell him where I’m headed and he starts with all these Elvis puns,
“That’s you left the building”
So I was giving them back,
“I know this rain’s really messing up my blue suede shoes”
We had a wee giggle and then chat gets onto music, he’s in a band who play every Saturday in The Trossachs and he’s from Luss. We chat about some music and then he tells me a story.
He had a wee granny flat attached to his house, which just became the dumping ground of the house. Him and his wife really wanted to turn it into a hospitality area with a bar for them and their friends (I don’t imagine the Luss nightlife to be particularly wild!), and he had asked two guys he knew who were labourers if they could do the work for him. Obviously the cost of all of the fixtures and fittings and labour would be massive so him and his wife decided not to go ahead with it and leave things as they were.
Then he said the labourers got in touch with him and said that they had been laid off their jobs and that they had all the stuff to do the project and would only ask for £400 each for the whole job. He only had £600 to his name at this point but said yes to them, and that he would find the rest of the money somehow. It was to be a surprise for his wife’s Christmas. He bought his wife the most dull gifts for Christmas, knowing that she would love what he had actually done. She’s a teacher, so the workers would come in while she was away at work. There was a skip outside the house and he asked the neighbours to tell her, sorry but it was theirs. He kept all the blinds drawn once it was ready, and on the 26th December, he invited over all of her friends from work for a party and unveiled it to her.
Now, he showed me photos of this place, it was amazing! This was back in 2008, but it looks so modern. There’s a bar with the proper fitted fridges like you would find in an actual bar, he has a wee studio set up and sofas, a massive telly, karaoke, swanky bar stools, hardwood floors. He’s obviously added to it over the years, but this guy was the nicest, friendliest, happiest most grateful guy I have met in a long while and I just felt like he deserved it.
He told me he didn’t worry about the little things, he was lovely and kind to people even if they weren’t the same to him and it all made sense. The guys who did the work for him obviously could have got more money elsewhere, but they could see it was a great project and a lovely thing to do that would make him and his wife be happy. And after all, £400 is better than nothing if you’ve just been laid off. It was a lovely story and it really looked like a wonderful place!
We talked a bit about how when you are kind, positive, honest and happy in general, even when the shit hits the fan, your life is generally better.
The whole trip to Paisley we were smiling and laughing,and he very kindly gave me a lower fare than it should have been. As I was getting up to leave, he said
“Ohhh would you listen to that! There’s Elvis on the radio!”
And it was.
Bloody Elvis on the local radio station.
Have a lovely day! Try smile a bit more at all the bad things and you’ll notice there’s a lot more good stuff surrounding you!