On the evening before Monica and her husband were due to leave their Mill Valley home for a month-long trip, she rushed into the Larkspur AAA office just 45 minutes before closing.
"I asked Michael Gonsalves-a AAA Member Service Associate-a question or two, made a quick purchase, and then dashed off to take care of a few other last-minute errands," Monica says.
At her next stop Monica reached for her wallet and found, to her horror, that her ATM card was missing. "I realized immediately that I had left it at AAA, that the AAA office had closed, and that my flight would leave the next morning long before it opened again. I was devastated. My husband used to go to AAA to get traveler's cheques before every trip. But this time I had said to him, 'You don't need to do that. We can get cash and anything else we need with my ATM card.' That card was going to be our access to fun throughout Europe."
Monica phoned home to tell her husband the bad news. "To my amazement," she reports, "the first thing he said was, 'Oh, your card is here. A man from AAA dropped it off a little while ago on his way home.'
That man, of course, was Michael Gonsalves, who Monica had briefly consulted during her fly-by AAA stop. "I don't even know if I had told Michael that I was going to Europe the next day," Monica says. "He had no particular incentive to make a special trip to drop off my card. I thought his actions were so above and beyond 'business as usual.' It was just extraordinary of him to do that." And as a result, the Alhorns' trip was, in Monica's words, "absolutely fantastic."
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