Monday, November 26, 2012

I am Glad That I Grew Balls

So I have a cool story to share tonight... it's one of those what I call, "Shelley happenings". I had to make a run to the post office to mail out some signed copies of my book today. When I got there, I was the only customer there. I began going through the motions of asking the postal worker the quickest most economical way to send them, blah blah... and after she weighed the book, and the bubble mailers I had to mail them in she told me how to send them. I proceeded to the "I'm not finished yet" counter to fill out my labels because someone else walked in by this point and was ready and waiting. As I was filling out my labels, an older gentleman walked in... probably around 50 or so. He fluttered in, in a boisterous way chumming it up with the postal lady who he had a nickname for, (I cannot remember what it was now, but it was funny.) He carried an armful of boxes probably 9 or more, all of the same size. These two things told me that a.> He was a "regular" and perhaps a neighbor of hers given their conversation, and b.> he probably sold something and I was curious what it was.

I continued to fill out my labels slowly, so I could listen in ... (okay, so I could eavesdrop) on the conversation. What? Don't judge! I just wanted to know what he sold! Anyway.... so he was talking away sharing all kinds of stuff with his "friend" the postal lady and I was politely eavesdropping. (Knowledge is power!) I learned that he had just gotten back from being out west visiting, and how when they got back last night they had 200 orders to fill! AHA! He DID sell something. 200 orders? Holy cow I HAD to know now! I waited for a moment of silence and said "Hey, what do you sell?" (Might I add that there were 2 people in front of me and 3 people behind me by now.) We had a conversation and he told me he sold toys... collectibles, not old ones but new ones like star wars figures and Monster High stuff, on Amazon. We continued to chat it up, and I found out he was planning to pay off his house with this business venture to which I gave him kudos and that his wife was a teacher who had to box up and label all of these incoming orders before school that morning.

As I approached the clerk window beside where he was being helped he noticed my "all the same size" packages. He quickly said, "what do YOU sell?" To which I replied, "I am an author, and this is my first shipment of signed copies going out." (First time I actually said that out loud... it was a cool moment.) He happily said with a smile, "I want your book!" I said, "Sure!" and gave him a card. He shared that he knew two people that were writers, one who was family and had her self-published books in Neiman Marcus now; (my ears went BOING!) He also said he was interested in finding out how to publish his poetry, which I thought was cool and shared that is how I started writing. I said I would help him learn what to do.

He asked what kind of book I wrote, so I shared that it was a motivational/inspirational book about overcoming adversity and that it was my true story; he smiled. He introduced himself as he stuck out his hand for me to shake and as I shook it I introduced myself too. We were both done mailing our packages at this point and even though I was paying NO attention to everyone waiting, I know they all witnessed something cool. An old kind of friendliness that people today have forgotten... it almost no longer exists. There is a cool factor that can resonate from having the guts to talk to a stranger; I do it all of the time. I think I have my Dad to thank for that, because I remember as a child picking up hitch hiker's! Thanks to the media and movies that give people bad ideas, we have lost that, and it's kind of sad.

I am happy I grew balls, or maybe it's just that the old Shelley has returned. The bottled up girl I became after being moved away from my hometown, at a very vulnerable age, has finally overcome what made me quiet and shy once upon a time. I can certainly say that shy does not exist for me anymore and I am happy to say that I try to meet a stranger almost everywhere I go. (Like the lady I met in Target at the checkout last week when I complimented how beautiful her sweater was, and yes... she gave me a compliment in return. Funny how that happens!

Goodnight my peeps! 
I must get some sleep so that I can continue changing the world one blog post, one book, and one stranger at a time!