January 31st, 2007
During the end of our business trip to Buenos Aires, Argentina, my colleague and I decided to do some sightseeing. We were truly impressed by what he had already seen in this beautiful city and wanted to make sure we made it a point to see a few more of the city’s top attractions. So we made our way over to one of the popular areas called Recoleta. On Saturday and Sunday the Plaza Francia hosts an open market called Feria de Plaza Francia.
At this Recoleta Fair vendors sell all sorts of arts and crafts as well as souvenirs. Here we found a lot of great gifs to take back home. At one of the stands, I found these great Tango coasters I thought would make fun gifts. When I paid the woman, I noticed I didn’t have exact change so I gave a $10 peso bill (I believe) and figured I would let her keep the change. My colleague and I continued walking down this plaza towards the fountain. There were dozens of vendors neatly displaying their goods throughout their stands. All of a sudden we looked and saw the woman that had sold us the coasters standing next to us breathing heavily (she apparently was running looking for us) and said I had overpaid her. She offered me either the $2 pesos change she had in one hand (today’s FX rate .64 cents USD) or another coaster she had in the other hand. I looked over to my colleague in amazement. I thanked her and told her I had purposely not asked for change, and there was no need for her to give me another coaster.
It really blew me away that this kind woman would have left her stand to find us when she noticed I had overpaid her. She could have easily rationalized it was only a couple of pesos that I could certainly do without. I think for the rest of the day I walked around with a huge smile thinking about this honest woman. It truly was inspiring and encouraging.
Entry Filed under: Honesty