The start of the new year 2014 presented an unprecedented challenge to two complete strangers, Rosy Levin and Justin Tunn, who had both, independently, decided on a New Year’s Resolution of being mindful, caring and polite toward others.
Rosy and Justin just happened to walk towards the same entrance of Westfield Mall in San Francisco last year, in the morning of January 2nd, 2014. Both had been planning to take advantage of post-new-year’s sales that they expected to find when they walked in.
Except that they could not walk in. As both of them approached one of the entrances at the same time, each stood to the side, so the other one could walk in first.
“My first impulse was to just barge in, as I normally did back in 2013,” recounted Jason. “And then I remembered my new year’s resolution. I wanted to leave this kind of inconsiderate behavior in the past. So, I stepped aside for Rosy.”
“Same here,” said Rosy. “I wasn’t going to just walk in and take advantage of someone who was so polite. That would start my new year with the wrong attitude.”
Justin and Rosy stood out of each other’s way for a while, each urging the other to walk in first. Trying to be a gentleman, Justin held the door open for Rosy, but when Rosy realized he is getting tired, she took over so he could rest. They kept switching throughout the day.
“It was a cold day,” Jason recounted. “I noticed Rosy was shivering slightly. So, I called Macy’s in the mall, and asked one of their employees to deliver to the West Exit a down parka, thermal tights, warm gloves and a furry Siberian “Ushanka” hat for Rosy. Got her size right the first time!”
“Jason was getting hungry,” remembered Rosy. “I could hear his stomach rumble. So, I called the mall food court and had them deliver a portion of Tandoori Chicken and two samosas.”
It got trickier at night. Jason was able to order a small foldable cot and a sleeping bag, and the two polite strangers kept taking shifts jumping in and of the bag so each could catch a few z’s. In the sleepy confusion of the early morning hours they mistakenly crawled into the bag together and slept for several hours on top of each other before Rosy woke up and extricated herself from under Jason, embarrassed.
For several days, they helped hide each other with a large towel while one of them at a time was taking sponge baths or changing their underwear and clothes. After a week, they had no choice but to purchase a small portable shower with a water heater and started giving each other soap baths behind a shower curtain.
In early Spring, Rosy discovered with surprise that she was expecting. She shared the exciting news with Jason, who quickly called Tiffany’s to order a pair of platinum rings. Rosy was able to arrange for a small, intimate wedding ceremony, which was catered for free by Cullen’s Fine Dining, one of the upscale restaurants in the Mall.
Their daughter Jessica Amelie Dunn was born in early October, with Oshkosh donating free baby clothes and sippy cups to the young couple who they had been seeing stand at the West mall entrance for the last 10 months.
On Thanksgiving, River Oaks Bar and Grill provided turkey for the family, and the mall offered free delivery for all of their holiday shopping since delivery distance was less than a quarter mile.
As New Year 2015 rang in, Jason, Rosy and Jessica, the latter one providing her opinion via “waa” and “bdbdbd” sounds, settled on a new new year resolution. They gave up on the polite courtesy of who would enter the mall first, and moved, instead, to a small suburban home which they had been able to negotiate over the phone.