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A small miracle

Gabriela Leskur | Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Imagine my surprise when in the most unlikely of places I found a ray of hope, a random act of kindness that lifted my spirits.
This incident occurred in the basement of Farley Hall in the wee hours of the morning. I knew at that point on a Monday only the engineers and I were still awake. The silence was that profound.
Yes, on that fateful day, an eerie quiet hung over the room like a fog.
Unfortunately, a similar haze was keeping me from thinking clearly.
With two papers, a test and a slew of other things waiting to be checked off my to-do list, I needed a jolt of caffeine and fast. I was starting to fade and I swear I could hear my bed beckoning me. That sly seductress gets me every time. I just can’t turn her down.
Having just purchased my beloved venti toffee nut mocha from Starbucks a few hours earlier, I looked at the vending machine hesitantly. Did I really need more caffeine? My Domer Dollars and Flex Points were becoming scarce.
Suddenly, I remembered I had some actual paper currency in my book bag. Things were looking up.
The Vanilla Coke called my name once again and, with money in hand, I approached the cool-looking Coke machine that was all red, pretty and new.
Overwhelmed by the beauty of this lovely mechanism, I did not realize three drinks were stuck inside and that it wasn’t working.
In my ignorance, I put in a dollar and plopped in a quarter.
Since I always accidentally press the wrong button and end up wasting money on bottled water, I carefully made sure I selected my beloved Vanilla Coke  –  all in vain.
As the tray moved up to retrieve my Vanilla Coke and dispense it, I finally noticed the vending machine wasn’t working.
Of course I had no more money so I wouldn’t be able to go to another vending machine, and my student ID was all the way up in my room on the third floor. I knew there was no way I was walking all the way to my room unless I was going there to sleep.
This is when the miracle occurred.
The vending machine realized it wasn’t working and returned my money.
I swear the heavens opened up and a chorus of angels sang.
In that moment, after a week of being disappointed by the selfishness of others, this humble vending machine restored my faith in the world.
I went back to my homework with a refreshing drink and a smile on my face. I guess little acts of kindness are always appreciated, no matter who  –  or what  – they come from.
But then again, it is just a vending machine, not some act of God.
Maybe I should stop drinking so much caffeine.