I was 19 and working alone at a rather well known coffee chain attached to a gas station. It was late at night and I felt rather lonely and just wanted my shift to end. The clock ticked on slowly and staring at the time wasn’t helping the it go by any faster. All of a sudden I heard this loud and boisterous fellow talking to the gas station attendant. The happy man gave the gas attendant something. Then this man smiled at me and walked out, the door chiming behind him. Moments later he came back in and handed me not one, but two Hockey calendars. It was then that I realized that it was Walter Gretzky! I was astonished as I had never run into Walter before and I never knew how amazingly friendly he was. Then Walter quickly left the station, all smiles, and waved to us as he went.
The calendars he gave me, they’re still in the wrap and I have kept them all these years as I thought that the calendars would be worth something some day. The calendars aren’t worth anything, but they were worth everything to me in that moment when he gave them to me. That moment when I was feeling so sad and alone and Walter came in all smiles and joy. I realized that I really I kept those calendars to remember what kindness and generosity really felt like, and to give back when I can. Because of Walter, I’ve never forgotten.