The Return of The Entrepreneur…Posted: March 29, 2012
I have been carrying around a twenty-dollar bill all week, being careful not to spend it in anticipation of once again meeting The Entrepreneur.
If you have been reading here, you may recall that about a week ago I talked about a local itinerant merchant whom I called The Entrepreneur. At the time that he last approached me, I didn’t have much cash and I was in a hurry. Even though I wasn’t going to purchase anything, he gave me a bracelet. I wear it all the time now. I like it, and it makes me feel happy to think of this unexpected gift.
I went to the store a couple of days ago, walking in the beautiful weather and taking extra-long to get where I was going. This was because I stopped often to gaze at drifts of daffodils and the high clouds in the bright blue sky, and to pet dogs. (All the dogs in the neighborhood seemed to be taking their owners for walks this fine day).
On short jaunts I try to travel without a purse, cumbersome nuisance that it sometimes is, so I just had my credit card in my pocket. I was walking along, on the slate sidewalk of course, noticing the various lemony and deep yellows of forsythia, when I remembered my twenty-dollar bill. Hmm. I hadn’t seen The Entrepreneur all week, but, life being life, I’d better go get the money, just in case. It took only a few minutes, and then I continued on my way.
As I approached the store, I saw, standing right in front of the door, my merchant with his wares. Eureka! How was that for timing and placement?
There he was, wearing his usual smile and dressed in his usual hiking gear (long shorts, low boots, dark T-shirt). He did indeed look as if he’d been hiking for a few days: slightly disheveled, grimey, rugged and sinewy. He was about my size, which would be quite slight for a man. He had backpacks, front packs, and bulging cargo pockets full of the jewelry that he was selling.
The first thing he said after I greeted him was, “Here, we have to move away from the store.” OK, but why, I wondered. He wasn’t selling stolen goods or anything illegal. Maybe he was supposed to have a license to sell wares? I’ll have to check into that; I’m not used to feeling like I have to make my transactions in a clandestine manner. But, all we did was move down the sidewalk several yards. Maybe the store owners allow him to hang around as long as he doesn’t obstruct their doorway with his commerce?
He didn’t even remember that he had given me the bracelet, so he was not expecting payment for it in any way or dwelling on who was beholden to him. No matter the reason, isn’t that refreshing, in this day and time? He just smiled and showed me what he had on hand to sell:
“I got these. These are nice. And I got more. These are $10 each. Do you like these? Or how about these? I got earrings…”
He sold me three pieces of jewelry for $20, quite a bargain I thought, and then he thanked me profusely. When I turned away from him and was just about to walk into the store, he called after me, “Hey! Thank you…”
“Thank you!” He waved to me and smiled.
He was so full of genuine gratitude. I loved that. We should all be so grateful and gracious.
I think “The Lost Art of Gratitude” shall be a future wordpress post.
(Thank you for reading ; )