This unlikely duo is a perfect example of how every stranger has the potential to be a friend.
28-year-old Eric Haralson went to a McDonald’s in Noblesville, Indiana last week with the intention of eating breakfast by himself – and as fate would have it, so was Jan.
Jan is a 70-year-old woman who approached Haralson in the restaurant and asked if she could sit down with him and eat breakfast. Haralson enthusiastically said ‘yes’.
The two of them spent the next 45 minutes enjoying each other’s company and swapping stories about their lives. Haralson talked about his son and girlfriend, while Jan talked about how she used to be an artist. When their time together came to an end, Haralson walked her to her car and they exchanged numbers with the intention of having breakfast again soon.
“She is a wonderful woman,” Haralson told TODAY Food about his new friend. “She mentioned many times how we all should love one another. And how we should not judge anyone because you never know how their day is going and what they’ve been through.”
It was only later that Haralson saw a picture of him and his new friend on Facebook. A school teacher named Amanda Marquell Craft had snapped a photo of their exchange and published it to social media so she could praise him for his compassion – and the post ended up being shared thousands of times.
“Shout out to this guy! This elderly lady (seemed to be a little lonely) came up to him and asked if she could sit with him,” Craft wrote. “My friends and I watched him introduce himself and shake her hand. They talked and laughed together like they were friends. They didn’t know each other, and they couldn’t be more different. But today they shared a meal together and it touched our hearts.”
Haralson is glad that his sweet conversation with Jan could inspire so many people, but he says that he is mostly just happy to have a new friend.
Although she has not yet responded to the voicemail he left about how they are now internet famous, he says he is excited to set up another breakfast date.
“I’ll keep trying,” said Haralson. “I know if we had forever she would have a story for me for everyday.”
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