The City of Greenville received a heartwarming note from the unlikeliest of places this week.
Adam Salamito lives in Melbourne, Victoria, Australia. He said he works part time to supplement his disability pension and, on occasion, drops by a Melbourne-area restaurant called “The Soup Place,” for a meal.
But the Soup Place doesn’t just sell meals; it offers diners a chance to “pay it forward” by buying meals for the less fortunate and penning a handwritten message the restaurant pins to a wall.
To claim a free meal, all one must do is grab a note and present it at the counter.
So when Salamito’s free lunch – and message – came courtesy of an anonymous person from “Greenville, S.C.,” he decided to email the city of Greenville communications team, 9,800 miles away.
“To have someone from the other side of the world do such a simple, charitable act, touched me deeply,” he wrote. “I’ve now put [the Post-it Note] in a frame to hang on my wall. This way, whenever I feel down, it will be a visual reminder that the world is a beautiful place.”
The note – and the meal – came courtesy Tim and Linda Adamthwaite, who were in Melbourne visiting Tim’s family.
“Humbled – that’s the answer for both my husband and I,” Linda said of her reaction to Salamito’s note.
The couple bought 20 bowls, she said, while visiting the Soup Place.
“We started buying up bowls and writing up sticky notes.”
A chef at Greenville’s Project Host, a non-profit with the mission of using food to feed the hungry and train the unemployed, Adamthwaite said she and her husband are always on the lookout for ways to serve.
“We just help out where we can,” she said. “We’ve been where we’ve counted our dollars, where things have been tight, and we want to just boomerang it around and help other people. We’re blessed, our children are grown … we want to help other people enjoy a better life, too.”
Beth Brotherton, city of Greenville’s director of communications and neighborhood relations, said Salamito’s message has made the rounds at City Hall and on social media.
“We instantly recognized that this was special,” she said. “It is the human stories – the connections – that we’re looking for.”
And a powerful reminder of what even the smallest act of kindness can do.
“This meant so much to us, we wanted to share it with the rest of Greenville to understand that the little things we do – even if it’s just $5 and a post-it note on vacation – we just don’t recognize the impact it might have,” Brotherton told the Journal. “Things just feel so heavy, sometimes, so any opportunity to make Greenville feel proud of Greenville, we want to be a part of that.”