Sunday, November 24, 2013

A Nice Discount

While waiting for my plane to leave the San Jose airport recently, I arrived earlier than usual and found myself with an hour to spare and the need to acquire some small gift to take to the staff at our San Antonio branch, to which I was traveling. So, I dropped into the Discover store at the new and improved Terminal A. (It really is improved: wi-fi is available for free throughout the airport, and every seat has a plug. You can tell you are in Silicon Valley. I like it!)

At the Discover store, I found products from an interesting new firm: Tom Ranch. At least, it is new to me, and I am fairly familiar with companies that sell California souvenirs since I am always needing souvenirs for our distant branch personnel. There were some suitable gifts: chocolate-covered cherries, chocolate pistachios, and wine-infused chocolates in pill-box-shaped containers. Intriguing. I settled for tea chocolates in an eyeglass-holder-shaped tin.

As I was browsing, the sales clerk, who had recently transferred to this store, struck up a conversation. I had time, and there were no other customers. So, we chatted a bit. When I had selected the gifts I wanted, he asked if I were military. I told him that I am no longer a member of the Armed Forces but do work with the military and shared that I was actually on my way to an air base, which housed our organization's local branch.

When he rang up my order, he proudly announced that he was giving me a 33% discount, which made the cost of my few gifts very affordable.

"Do you want to see my government I.D.?" I asked him.

"No," he answered. "I am not giving you a military discount. I am giving you a higher discount -- for being nice."