Cupcakes and Earthquakes

As I drove away I thought, whose running this place and what just happened? It was like I entered a realm where all the people acted the same way. Did they all drink some weird concoction to make them alike? Were they hooked into the same mystical wavelength?

Or were they just smart people with a common goal to deliver outstanding customer service?

For five weeks I have fretted and moaned over a weird rattle in my new car. It drove me crazy each time I hit a bump in the road. It became my bump in the road.

Two separate mechanics spent more time telling me how difficult it would be to fix than actually finding and solving the problem. No one really tried. No one really cared.

Then I went to Destination Mazda. At the front entrance a man opened the door and greeted me. I assumed he was being nice because he thought he could sell me a car. Oswald, the man checking me in at the service desk, was overly smiley. He didn’t know this was a difficult case. He asked Darryl to go for a ride with me to hear this rattle.

Darryl had the type of aura that gave the impression he didn’t have a care in the world. He sat in my car and was overly calm. I was nervous and scared. Darryl was my last hope.

So we drove. And the car didn’t make one squeak.

So we drove some more. Nothing.

My heart sank.

With a voice that had not given up hope, Darryl directed me to a little street a distance away. One circle of the block and the rattle sounded! Eureka! We went around and around as Darryl listened.

We got back to the dealership and Oswald was still smiling. Before I knew it a young man was giving me a ride home while Darryl dealt with my car. Four hours later he returned to pick me up. “All part of the service.”

My car was fixed… the rattle was gone. And it wasn’t going to cost me a penny.

Each person at the dealership seemed genuinely happy to help me. Is this what real customer service looks like? I think so.

How do you thank people for being kind and helpful and caring? I bought them some cupcakes.

Darryl is eying which cupcake to choose

Darryl is eying which cupcake to choose and Oswald is smiling from behind.

I would have done something more but the other kind and helpful and caring people I know were dealing with an earthquake and I was needed there.

So I drove my quiet car to the Monastery to see what could be done for the temple and children’s school in Kathmandu.

I hope Darryl ate two of those cupcakes.

Julian was my chauffeur

Julian was my chauffeur

Cupcakes #3

Even Vanessa and Jennifer were happy to help



4 replies
  1. Wendy A.
    Wendy A. says:

    This anecdote is very true of trying to find the right people to really help you with a problem that others cannot seem to care about nor solve. It reminds me of my own experience in receiving excellent service which given the circumstances did mean so much more than the regular client. Hope it’s okay to ‘tell’ this story.

    Recently having ordered blood work by my doctor, I had to rumble up the courage to go to Life Labs. You see, I have a truly serious needle phobia which I understand; can manage but need time to prepare myself. Years ago I used to leave nearly fainting after visiting a lab and then sit in my car and cry for about 20 minutes with relief it was over and also knowing I’d again had to be very brave. No one at the lab ever knew.

    So, again with my little mental tricks: take a book to distract me from where I’m waiting, have water to drink and a planned ‘treat’ to follow, my lab technician was personable, quick and very expert with the dreaded ‘needle.’ Always sit there afterwards and have a banana or some edible snack with more water for about 15 minutes as I know I won’t cry in the lab waiting room.

    I was so impressed with the staff that day, decided to surprise them with a card of thanks (and with explanation as to why it meant so much to me) and a few treats. So, the next day, I visited Life Labs with some chocolates, cookies and the card of thanks. The staff there were so shocked. As a former health care worker, do know it is seldom to have acknowledgement of good service. So, I did know it would be a delightful surprise for all the staff.

    Your thank you with the cupcakes was a similar treat for the staff of the car dealership and definitely Julian too. They will cherish the memory as well as knowing they really do their job to the best of their ability.

    It’s so easy to make that tiny effort to show appreciation for thoughtful and excellent service.


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