Picture the scene. I am packing up after work and I realise I can't find my car park ticket (a credit card sized piece of flimsy cardboard that was spat at me from a machine three hours earlier). I panic because this isn't like me at all.
Normally I have everything in its place however I had extra bags; a suitcase full of equipment for my training session, a projector for my presentation over one shoulder and my handbag over another. My phone was in my hand logged onto Google Maps for walking directions from the car park to the venue...
My colleague soothes my brow and says that we will check my car when we return to the car park. He already has the measure of me and suggests it may be on the passenger seat of my car displayed for all to see!
The car park ticket isn't there. I heave a despondent sigh and head off toward the ticket machine to find out how much a 'lost ticket' will cost me. I have a small argument with myself on the way, much in the same way that Muttley used to mutter under his breath when Dick Dasterdly used to demand, "Muttley, do something!"
The sign on the wall says "LOST TICKETS WILL BE CHARGED AT £8.00". I don't think that's too bad and believe it is a small price to pay for my own carelessness. I was thinking more along the lines of £15-25 if I'm being totally honest. I press the button and the disembodied voice of the car park attendant directs me round to the office.
He appears at the window, does an exaggerated eye roll at me and says, "Lost ticket, eh?" I start to make my excuses and desperately attempt to remember my car registration number so I can prove I'm not stealing a knackered Saxo with a broken wing mirror. He stops me in my tracks by winking at me and saying "Call it a quid, love." I protest slightly by saying, "Are you sure?" and he insists it's all good. He takes a pound coin off me, issues me with a ticket for the exit machine and wishes me a good day.
Random acts of kindness fall into my 'pay it forward' ethos. I'll certainly be offering a random act of kindness as soon as the first opportunity arises. What about you?