Happiness comes from within
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    Soul Rythem

    One woman’s happiness causes others to smile

    While changing planes Thursday morning in Charlotte, N.C., I went into the ladies restroom on the C Concourse. It wasn’t just any airport restroom, I discovered. It was “Valerie’s Happy Restroom,” at least that’s what Valerie called it as she greeted weary and hurried travelers. For those who entered her domain, she offered an empty stall and a bit of cheer.

    I didn’t see Valerie when I walked in and found a stall on the back side of the restroom but I heard her energetically welcoming women into the place that she keeps clean.  I’m sure she startles many of them, including me, because we are not accustomed to people being so happy when they work and then sharing their happiness without reservation or discrimination with others.  But Valerie does just that.

    “Might as well be happy,” I heard her tell someone. “I come to work to have fun; otherwise I might as well stay home.”

     “No one can take your happiness, you give it away,” Valerie shared along with a litany of  other reasons to be happy. 

    When she wasn’t talking or greeting new visitors to her restroom, Valerie was singing the chorus of the popular song “You are my Sunshine”  

    “You are my sunshine
    My only sunshine
    You make me happy
    When skies are grey
    You’ll never know dear
    How much I love you
    Please don’t take my sunshine away.”

    I was washing my hands when Valerie rounded the corner and saw me. She smiled and said “Welcome to Valerie’s restroom.” I smiled back. We exchanged a few pleasantries before she moved on and started singing again. I was left with a fresh feeling of well-being and an early morning dose of happiness as I left the restroom.

    What a different world we would have if each of us chose to spread happiness as we went about our work, especially that work that involves interacting with the public. A little contagious happiness may be just what someone needs to shift the downward trajectory of their day.

    (P.S. While doing a Google search, I came across  blogs and two You Tube videos about Valerie from other travelers who encountered her also in the  Charlotte airport and found excellent customer service and a smile.)

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