Previous Challenge Entry (Level 3 - Advanced)
Topic: Illustrate the meaning of "Actions Speak Louder than Words" (without using the actual phrase). (02/21/08)
TITLE: Sending Flowers
By Shannah Hogue
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From the moment I realized I had slept through my alarm until the moment when I dropped onto the bus stop bench, not one single thing had gone as planned.
Much of the bad day was a string of little frustrations. Because I missed my alarm, I missed my bus and had to walk almost six blocks out of my way to catch it at a later stop. Missing my bus made me late to work, so I was totally unprepared for the weekly meeting we have on Wednesday mornings.
I realized when I decided to stop for lunch that my lunchbox was still sitting on the counter at home, and my computer crashed at least three times. I never did get that final email finished.
But then, someone delivered flowers to the office. For me. It was a simple bouquet, an arrangement of daisies, carnations and greenery. There was no note.
With the arrival of those flowers, my day changed immediately. I put them on my desk, and my cubicle seemed much brighter. My hungry stomach growled just a little less harshly. And for some reason, my computer started running more smoothly, though I still never got back to that final email.
And just before the end of the day I discovered who sent me flowers, a discovery that was the most unexpected part of the entire bizarre day. In the last bathroom stall on the third floor ladies room, I overheard two of the secretaries talking at the sinks. They didn’t know I was there, of course, and Sue told Ann that Joanie Stimple had sent ordered flowers this morning for somebody in marketing, though she didn’t know who they’d been sent to.
I was floored.
Joanie is the meanest secretary in the office, and she happens to be the one I have to deal with the most often. She’s old, with a mouth that is curved into a perpetual scowl. She sits alone at lunch because no one can stand to be around her, and no matter what is asked of her, she mutters under her breath about having to do it.
But she sent me flowers. I was amazed and touched. I guess she isn’t such a hard egg after all. Maybe I’ll invite her to sit with me for lunch tomorrow. If I remember to pick up the bag off my counter, that is.
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