The Man at the FedEx Store

Oddly, the FedEx store is the only spot downtown that carries the pretzels I like.

One or two weekends a month, I go there for a salty snack fix. Which is what I am doing one recent Saturday morning.

The man behind the counter sometimes works the weekend shifts. He’s rung me up perhaps twice in the past six months.

He finishes helping the customer ahead of me. I step up to the counter.

“Hey!” the man says.

I look up. I wasn’t expecting to be remembered. And I’m taken off my guard by how great it feels. It is wonderful to be recognized.

I ask if it’s been busy. He says it’s quiet, then everyone comes in at once. I say we customers gather outside and when there’s a critical mass of us, we go in to swamp the registers. He thanks me for that.

I take my receipt and pretzels, thank him, head out, still feeling great.

I know, now, a lovely thing: when we recognize someone - even with one word - we can leave them feeling seen. And the glow of that can elevate someone’s whole moment, morning, day.

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