Dad’s had another stroke. 

I don’t even know what I’ve thrown into this battered roll-about to rush to stand in this line for a seat assignment. My heart is still racing like a BMW down the Autobahn over 100 miles an hour, but my feet can’t move an inch to get to the ticketing agent.

I’m next in line to be helped; I’ve been next in line for over seven minutes. It feels like twenty to me. However, it must seem like seventy to the agent. The woman he’s trying to assist has an angry voice that keeps piercing my ears as deeply as my worry for my dad. She’s upset and she wants everyone in the area to know that she wants an upgrade and she wants it now.

With his head bent down and his fingers beating his computer’s keys, the agent seems to be working hard to accommodate the woman.

Oh, no, the emotionless look on the agent’s face is broadcasting an upcoming message the agent abuser isn’t going to like. I didn’t hear his words, but her huff and high heel clicks on the marble floor were loud and clear that she didn’t get the customer service she thought she deserved.

Finally, I was a step closer getting to my dad. I hand my ticket to the agent. Like a pro, he took it with a grin and grunted a canned greeting.

Even though my heart is hurting with unrest of its own, I couldn’t let this man feel unappreciated for his efforts to please the unpleasant one. “Are you near the end of your shift?”

With a tilt of his head and a laser beam stare, “Yes” was all that he said.

“Oh good, you deserve some quiet time. I’ve seen how hard you’ve been working as I’ve been standing here in line. Mine is going to be easy. All I need is a seat number.”

In a flash his head leaned in the opposite direction, “What are you going to be doing inSaint Louis, Ms. Knefely?”

My hand covered my mouth from the shock of the question. I didn’t really want to say the words out loud but between my fingers the words came out in a whisper, “To see my dad. He just had a stroke this morning.” I couldn’t say much more.

There was a silent pause between us for a moment before his fingers started dancing across the keys in front of him. A sigh escaped from my soul, I couldn’t keep up friendly chatter any longer.

“Here you are,” as he held out my ticket packet. “You will have a nice flight.”

“Thank you.”

The rush was on again. The waiting area was almost empty. I guess it was closer to take- off time than I thought. The attendant rushed me aboard.

With a gasp, I realized what the agent meant when he said, “You will have a nice flight.” I was flying home to see my dad in First Class!


Last week on Christian Communicators Live blog talk radio, our guest speaker Sue Falcone – Known as “Simply” Sue shared insights on customer service. Her interview has nuggets for speakers and writers. You can go to and listen. 

 Uplifting blessings,


 Therefore, as God’s chosen people, holy and dearly loved; clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience.                        Colossians 3:12