It was a summertime week night in Volterra, Italy. That little town is one of the most stunning places I have ever been in my life. It sits at the top of a Tuscan hill, and the views become even more spectacular as the sun sets. We spent a nice afternoon in that historic little town. On a quaint corner a shopkeeper invited us in for a wine tasting and we took him up on it. We sat in a private room with some friends as he brought out a few wines and some beautiful charcuterie. Then he went the extra mile.
He told us his family ran a restaurant down the street. It was one of the most well rated places in the town. A phone call made sure we had a table in the place at prime time. We would watch the sun set over the Tuscan hills as we ate our dinner. Sure enough, we made our way down the street and there was a table waiting for us.
As we sat down my wife, Tammy, noticed the silverware on the table was set in an interesting way. Each knife and fork was placed on a little “rest” that was made of clay. She became obsessed with them and wondered how we might be able to take some home. That’s when our waiter went the extra mile.
He said they were made at a little shop just down the street. So he actually ran over to the shop to see if it was still open and, if so, we’d be able to purchase some. Unfortunately, it was closed. But our dinner was outstanding. As we ate an incredible meal we watched one of the most spectacular sunsets I have ever seen. The next day the restaurant went the extra mile.
Our friends who had been at dinner with us checked back the next day to see if they could purchase some of the clay silverware rests from the restaurant itself. It turned out that they had extras on hand, so they went the extra mile and sold them to us. Tammy now had a remembrance of Volterra, and that restaurant, that would be set on our table for years to come.
The extra effort made the the wine tasting host, the waiter, and the restaurant didn’t cost them anything at all. But the gestures they made were valuable to us as tourists. Sure, they got business out of it. But our experiences created memories that will last our entire lives. If we’re ever in Volterra again, I want to patronize those places.
What can you do today to go the extra mile for someone else? Your effort might just create a memory, a connection, or a relationship that will last far longer than you could have hoped. Something that costs you nothing could bring great benefits. Go ahead and give it a try.
What does your extra mile look like?