Airport Gratitude

190211 airplane-in-the-snow-banner

About 2am this morning (January 23rd), as I lie on a metal slab at the Detroit airport with my arm over my eyes to decrease the impact of the fluorescent lights, I hear one of those big power washer machines being used to clean the floors of the DELTA concourse.

And a little while later, as I looked at the person who was manning the washer I hear …

“I am so sorry about that. I didn’t want to disturb you … I needed to get the job done.”

My response …

“Floors look great. Thank you for your hard work.”

His response …

“Thank you for saying that. That means a lot to me. You have a blessed day.”

Giving thanks means the world. Giving thanks changes the world.

This morning while still at the Detroit airport, as I step out of the longest Starbucks line ever, and walk over to the attached convenience store, the cashier asks me …

“When does your flight leave?”

“About 2pm … I hope,” I respond.

“You are here until then?”

“Yes. I have actually been here since late yesterday afternoon.”

“Well you sure must be tired. Listen honey, don’t you go and make any decisions as tired as you are. That would not be good. Now promise me!”

“I promise.”

It is the love we share for one another that makes this life beautiful.


  1. Saying thank-you for every service big or small is so important. I am constantly surprised by how even non-fluent English speakers in Mumbai will respond to a Thank-you with an English “You’re welcome.”
    Dad and Mum taught us to say Thanks to every cab driver as we got off. And it became engrained. Now as a single woman navigating the city I recognize that Thank-you is an acknowledgment that they brought me to my destination safely, unmolested. Sometimes I say that to the cab drivers – all males. And with a tired smile they respond and acknowledge that they are not just ferrying passengers but they are taking them to safe harbours.
    I once did a Thumbs Up to a busy police cop at a major signal in New Delhi where everyone and his sister jaywalks. This man was just trying to do his job despite everyone breaking the rules. My thumbs up elicited a surprised smile. And I perhaps encouraged him to keep doing his job even when no one respected him.
    In India if I say Thank-you for some service professionally rendered, the cultural response is that I am being too formal. So I tell them that saying Thank-you is part of my religion where I am acknowledging that God made my path easier in this particular interaction.

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