Thursday, February 14, 2013

My Funny Valentine

Zillions of years ago, when I was 21 and living on my own for the first time, I received the best Valentine ever.

I was a key operator at a Kinko's Copy Center in Ann Arbor, MI.  The majority of  the work we did was education based.  From creating packs for professors to give their students, to making the final copies of a frazzled PHd student's doctoral dissertation, the stress level was always high because at a 24 hours Kinko's the deadlines never stop and for the students studying at the University of Michigan, the deadlines never stop either.

Needless to say, I had very few customers who weren't stressed out and therefore very few customers who were actually courteous and nice.  Except for Wilfred.

He was working on his PhD.  No clue exactly what he was studying, but he was always running late and running behind.  I believe he was from Haiti and he was just the nicest person.  I appreciated his kindness and in return, would do him favors, like sneak his order in front of everyone else's when no one was looking.  He appreciated this immensely and I always looked forward to the breaks in my week when I would see smiling Wilfred.

On Valentine's day 1991, I had prepared myself for no Valentines as I was not interested in dating because I was still trying to get used to being on my own.  Instead, I was going to go to the gay bar with my friends and just celebrate ~ period.  I was perfectly content with the state of things, in my own little world, when Wilfred appeared.

Frazzled as always, he waved me down as he was digging around in his back pack.  I looked over my orders to see where I could squeeze him in when he said "I don't need anything.  I just wanted to give you this."

He pulled from his backpack the flattest chocolate, marshmallow heart I have ever seen.  The red was even starting to flake off the foil wrapper.

"I'm so sorry! I've been carrying it all day."

I told him not to worry.  That I loved it.  He smiled, said "Happy Valentine's Day," and then he left as he was late, as always for wherever it was he was going.

To this day, I have yet to receive a better Valentine. Ever ;~D

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