Project 19: Treat a stranger to a free coffee

Today was the first really chilly day of the year for us here in the Dallas area.  After a week in the mid-80s (and an unbearable summer with a record number of 100+ degree days), a cold front blew through and brought the temperature down to a high in the low 50s.  I’m not a coffee drinker, but last winter Abby and I enjoyed going to Starbucks for a special treat of hot chocolate every once in a while. 

When I went to pick up the kids from preschool, I put some cash in my wallet with the idea of taking the kids to Starbucks and squeezing in a “special project” while we were there.  When I arrived at the preschool, Abby immediately said, “Mommy, it’s cold today.  We need to go get some hot chocolate!”  I told her great minds think alike and off we went!

The idea to pay for someone else’s coffee at Starbucks was on the original list of ways to make a difference.  I have occasionally heard of friends who were either the recipient of this random act of kindness or the giver.  I thought it was a great, fun, easy, and cheap project for us!

When we got to Starbucks, we ordered our hot chocolate and a couple other treats, and then I told the barista that I wanted to pay for the order of the next person in the drive thru.  At first she looked at me with a shocked look on her face and said “What?”  But then a huge smile slowly spread across her face and she rushed over to the drive thru window area.  We treated a man to a venti-something-or-other-that-I-don’t-understand-because-I-don’t-drink-coffee, for the whopping sum of about $3.  The barista told him and said he said to thank us. 

With our good deed done, we enjoyed some cake pops and hot chocolate.

I don’t think Abby quite understood what we were doing with this project, though.  When we were done eating, she asked when we were going to do our special project.  I had to explain several times that we already did it by buying the stranger’s coffee.  Maybe this project would have worked better if I’d had Abby bring her own money.  Oh well – I am sure we made that man’s day!

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