"Where the hell you been?"

In the mid 80's, I moved to Northern California from Ohio. I thought my way was paved. I would be a successful business manager. One of my favorite eateries was a Chinese restaurant in downtown Livermore. While there were many offerings on the menu, I always ordered Lo Mein. It was that good.


Long story short,

The job didn't pan out and I moved back to Ohio.


In the mid 90's,

I returned to Livermore for a short visit. I stopped in to my Chinese restaurant for a plate of Lo Mein. As I was sitting down, a familiar man stepped out of the kitchen, spotted me and said,

"Where the hell you been?"

Gobsmacked by his greeting, I couldn't answer. After all those years, he remembered me.

I was home again.


Over the years,

I've thought a lot about that greeting and how much it meant to me.

I existed.

I was recognized.

I mattered.

When this Covid 19 era winds down and we return to sit down restaurants, please take the time to look your server in the eye and say,

I missed you.

I'm here for you.

You matter!

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