Today, I was on a flight from San Diego to Dallas. Now, I had already decided when I awoke this morning, that I wanted to make this a very smiley-happy day of travel. So, I was already snuggled in my most comfortable American Airlines seat, when a couple of late boarders scrambled for their seats. They quickly realized they where in different seats and would not be making the trip together. The husband was obviously disappointed as he looked around for his seat, which was next mine. So I told the husband that I would switch with his wife so they could sit together.
He was very appreciative, and I told him that it’s happened to me before — and will probably happen again — so, it’s my turn! The wife and I made the switch, and I proceeded over to the unfamiliar window seat, put on my head-set, closed my eyes and just let the flight take off. When the seatbelt sign was finally turned off, I got up, stretched a little bit and started talking with the crew.
When I returned to my seat, the individual that I was now sitting next to struck up a conversation, and it was interesting… he had a certain spark in his eye. I didn’t ask who he was but it was becoming more and more obvious to me that he was in business or at least he was a real player. As it turned out, he was Chair and CEO of one of the largest and most profitable food companies on the planet.
He had retired in the early 2000s, but is still quite active in the business and was totally up to date on what’s going on in the idustry.
Net, it was an absolute pleasure sitting next to him, and I think it’s amazing how a small act of carrying water for someone else paid such a big benefit for me! The CEO is going to come to our next team gathering and talk about a famous product he is responsible for creating. What fun!
Upon landing, I was reflecting that if I hadn’t changed seats I never would have met this man. None of this would’ve happened.
Now, here’s the rest of the story, so to speak… Well, then, we landed and got up and got our bags out of the overhead bins. And the individual, whose wife I had changed seats with said, “Hey, thanks so much, man.”
I told him it turned out to be a bonus because I sat next to a legend in the food business. Then he said, “ I‘m in the food and wine business, too.”
Both my “new” seat-mate and I knew his food company, and we both almost fell over when he told us he owned this famous, famous, Napa winery. He said to give him one of my business cards and he would send me a bottle.
Then, he asked where I lived, and I told him Rancho Santa Fe, and he said, “Well, guess I won’t have to ship the bottle!” Nope! Just amazing! I hope I’ll be talking with these two new and extraordinary friends for a long time.
Life is incredible! My most core beliefs were reinforced, all because I made the decision to carry a little water for someone else. So, if you make it a point to carry water for someone else, the results can be astonishing. I mean it… you just can’t make this up!
Tally ho and rock on —