“Why don’t you pay our bill?”

This evening my niece, her husband and I went out to dinner at our favorite barbecue place.  The food was incredible as always.  At dinner, we caught up on news, gossip, and thoroughly enjoyed the evening.

There was a couple seated at the table next to us, and in a moment of conviviality, our eyes met; we smiled at each other and exchanged a few pleasant words.

As a joke my niece asked the man, “Why don’t you pay our bill?”

We all laughed.

Moments later, the couple left the restaurant.  A few minutes after that, we asked for our bill, gathered our things and walked to the front of the restaurant to pay the cashier.

It was then we received the incredible news.  Our bill had already been paid, complements of the young couple seated near us.

For a moment we just stared at each other, amazed that complete strangers would have paid our bill.  During the short ride home we wondered why?

There is, of course, no answer to that question, because we would probably never again meet the only persons who could answer it.

Without a doubt, we were deeply touched by the anonymous generosity of that young man and woman.  We agreed that we would pass that act of kindness forward.

Finally, in an effort to paint a complete and accurate picture of our benefactors, let me include one detail;  they are African-American.

Does the color of their skin matter to the story?  Perhaps it does, and most likely it does not.

I suspect that in the not too distant future that small detail would be totally unimportant to the story, but that day is not now.  Understanding that I feel a little sad for today, but greatly hopeful for our tomorrows.


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