Letters to the Editor

Whidbey wonders never cease | LETTER TO THE EDITOR

To the editor:

This story has to be told.

I’m standing in line at a Payless checkstand and see my basket cleared with a $63 total, when the clerk rings up another $3.

“No,” I say, “that belongs to him,” pointing to the man behind me.

The clerk says, “No, he says he wants to pay for your groceries.”

“That can’t be ...” I stutter, confused and shocked.

The middle-aged man in work clothes leans toward my ear and quietly says, “I recently came into some good fortune and want to pay it forward, so I want to buy your groceries today.” The clerk finishes bagging my stuff and pushes out my cart.

“Wow,” I say, “I guess that means it’s time for me to pay it forward too,” all the time seeing that kid, Trevor, working out how he’s going to pay it forward. I saw that movie several times — loved it.

“That’s up to you.” the man said, “It’s not necessary.”

Still speechless but hearing his letting go of any obligation, I did the only thing I could think of. “May I give you a hug?”

He returned it and we each moved on. I was too stunned to ask his name.

I got in my car — in wonder at what had just happened.

THEO WELLS

Freeland

We encourage an open exchange of ideas on this story's topic, but we ask you to follow our guidelines for respecting community standards. Personal attacks, inappropriate language, and off-topic comments may be removed, and comment privileges revoked, per our Terms of Use. Please see our FAQ if you have questions or concerns about using Facebook to comment.

Read the Dec 20
Green Edition

Browse the print edition page by page, including stories and ads.

Browse the archives.

Friends to Follow

View All Updates