Since taking up Orikane years ago, hundreds and hundreds of servers have enjoyed my dollar folds as gifts. One frequented restaurant fights over who gets to serve us. Others collect them in a case. Some always slip us extra desserts to go for folds. Over the years, our bucks are sometimes extra impactful. Four such stories (out of soooo many) stand out and I want to share them with you:
1. The Busboy
My husband and I attended a wedding in Hot Springs, Ark. We asked locals where to eat breakfast (always a good idea) and were directed to a pancake house they were quite proud of. The food was indeed outstanding, but unfortunately our server was less than stellar. It was near Easter so I was folding Montroll's rabbits for the season, but instead of gifting one to the server (who got her regular tip on the card despite her inattentiveness); it was the busboy, Ryan, who stood out. He was delightful, hardworking and LOVED his Orikane rabbit!
Because the food was so good, we stopped at the same restaurant the next morning, on our way out of town. Ryan lit up when he saw us and asked us if we wanted our same table. Sure! This time we got an awesome server and thankfully didn't even see the woman from the day prior. We folded our new server a rabbit at the meal's end and told her we gave one to Ryan the day before. She stood in silence for a long moment and then handed me a dollar from her pocket and asked that I fold another rabbit for him and relayed the awful story. Apparently, after we left the day prior, the waitress accused him of stealing "her" folded dollar from our table and made him unfold the model – flat – and give it to her (in front of customers). Triple ouch. How humiliating and unjust! She was sooooo glad we came back and cleared it all up.
So I quickly and discretely folded another and she gathered up all the other waitresses to present it to him and apologized for what had happened. I saw a big tear run down his cheek as we left.
2. The Bartender
I stopped at a bar with friends after an art exhibit and folded the bartender a penguin (model from Marc Sky). Being originally from Pittsburgh (their hockey team is the Penguins), I told the bartender that if he guessed where I was born, he could have the fold. His only hint was that the fold had something to do with where I was from. He guessed wrong three times and then snatched the little guy from the bar before I could deny him the gift and put it on his shoulder and said, "I love penguins. It's MINE!" It was so cute balanced on his shoulder, I couldn't help but laugh.
3. A Forest
We were at an iHop restaurant one Christmas. The seasonal fold of choice was the Christmas tree with the star on top by Jodi Fukumoto. After giving one to our waitress at the meal's end, I was surrounded by waitresses who all had dollars and wanted them for their children's stockings. I had to make a forest before I could leave! They were so delighted, I couldn't say no.
I was part of a Texas sailboat crew and we would stay in hotels all over the state during regattas. One particular hotel had an extensive free breakfast and a hard-working and always smiling attendant who spoke broken English. As we left, I gifted him a fold (unfortunately I don't remember which model) and he seemed deeply touched as if seldom appreciated. We checked out of the hotel and were loading up the van and out of the hotel ran the attendant waving his arms to stop us. Apparently, he loved his fold and wanted me to have a gift as well. He dug through his pockets and gave me a keychain his daughter gifted him with a dolphin on it, from Florida. I tried everything I could to explain to him that it was not necessary but he wouldn't hear of it. He pressed that model to his heart and smiled as we drove off with our boat trailing behind us.