Happy 86th Birthday Morris, whoever you are.
Last night we drove from Timmins to Barrie for a little getaway with Granny Canuck and Mrs. Canuck to stop at Casino Rama in Orillia and take in some good restaurant eats and a little minor shopping. A mandatory Barrie food stop for the traveling crew is “The Mandarin”.
Yes, it’s a Chinese buffet filled with fried food, sugary sauces and overeating indulgence like you’ve never seen before and we enjoy every calorie. While we were having dinner, the usual banter of staff danced about to sing happy birthday to an elderly couple sitting close to our table. We clapped with our sticky fingers and sang with the rest, only to find out the gentleman’s name was Morris, having dinner with his lovely wife and turning 86. Once the excitement died down, I looked at my Mom and instantly knew what she was thinking.
Over the course of many years, we have all taken turns to pay it forward to unsuspecting dining couples, drive-thru customers, and coffee-goers. One of my fondest memory is an elderly couple in their turquoise 1960’s Thunderbird behind us in the Dairy Queen drive-thru on a Sunday afternoon. We paid for their ice cream and drove away. A quick look in the mirror we could see the sheer surprise and delight on their faces as they were told their ice cream was on the silver vehicle driving north.
Tonight, we asked our server to make sure we picked up the tab for their dinner. Normally we get to sneak out and leave them wondering; but in this case, the server who wasn’t too sure of our intentions pointed directly at us when they asked who paid the bill. We all turned 50 shades of red and tried to sneak out; but before we could Mrs. Morris came to our table with tears of joy in her eyes and hugged my Mom. On our way out, we shook the hand of our new friend and made our way to the hotel.
This isn’t a challenge to anyone to pay it forward, I’m not posting for a pat on the back, I’m posting because as I posted before, it’s the little things in life. My Dad would sometimes do this, as cheap as he was. Tonight we did it for Morris and Mrs. Morris to make his day a little extra special and a story he will remember long into his 90th birthday.
We did it in part for ourselves, the little thing that reminds us of Dad. He would be even happier knowing it was two seniors. After all, they get a 20% discount.