I told you about these friends before. Several months ago I struck up a conversation with a nice man named Al in my neighborhood Starbucks. The next time I saw him, I gave him four passes to see my comedy set at Alexis Park. Well, ever since then Al and his wife, Pat, and Pat's cousin Richard and his wife, Jeanette, have come to be our new best friends. They're all between 69 and 80 and they're a freakin' blast. Seriously, they're younger than most people half their ages.
Anyway, the Hilton put on an amazing party. There were probably a couple of thousand people in the ballroom, which was decorated beautifully. A sit down dinner, dessert, open bar... who could ask for anything more? We sat near the main dance floor surrounding the band in the middle of the ballroom; there were two smaller dance floors at either end of the room. The music was perfect for the event, appealing to everyone, and we all danced our asses off.
Midnight was magical. As the band played "Auld Lang Syne," my heart brimmed with feelings of love for my new husband, the joy of sharing fun times with new friends, gratitude for their generosity, and hope that the year ahead will be filled with peace and good health.
Afterward we went up to our friends' friends' suite on the 29th floor with a balcony that overlooked the Strip. I stood there and had yet another "pinch me" moment (they happen quite frequently). My life is blessed, to be sure, but the reality is we wouldn't have been there had I not smiled at a stranger in a coffee shop.
Every encounter you have with another human being is an opportunity to create some magic. Why not reach out to someone today? Try to catch a stranger’s eye and then smile as if you’re having the best day ever. I guarantee the person will smile back. There’s your initial connection.
Sometimes the person will take the next step and start some small talk; if not, you can take the lead. Instead of asking, “How are you today?” say something they wouldn’t expect like, “Are you having a great day?” They’ll be taken aback by your enthusiasm and are sure to respond positively. And if not, well… maybe they’re simply not the type of connection you want to make. Or maybe a positive person like you is exactly what they need.
One thing I'm going to do this year--a resolution, if you will--is to write in my calendar book the names of every person I meet. Each encounter is a gift, if we're willing to accept it. I'm sure glad I accepted the gift the universe sent me when I met Al in Starbucks!