“My dream is to follow in Charles Kuralt’s shoes and travel the country interviewing amazing people. ” Debi Drecksler

My husband and I got on the road at midnight heading on an adventure to celebrate our 33rd anniversary. The highway was deserted on this freezing cold night and the trip was smooth sailing. At 4:30 a.m..we stopped for gas (and snacks) at Loves’ Travel Stop in Hogansville, Georgia. It was an experience I will never forget!

Meet Wanda Williams a.k.a. ” Mrs. Hawaii

When I opened the door a voice called out, “Welcome to Love’s!” Not your typical bland greeting, repeating words management requires employees to say. No way! This was a welcome fit for a queen, belted out in a melodic voice that could be heard through-out the store and out to the gas pumps. I looked up at a smiling face that seemed genuinely happy to see me.

My husband knew what was coming next. I used to write a column called, “You’ve Been Caught Being Nice” ( a Debi Drecksler original) and this woman, with her bubbling personality, would have been selected in a heartbeat for an interview.

Wanda Williams, hails from the beautiful state of Hawaii, which explains her nickname. She’s worked in several of Love’s locations (having lived in various states) and brings her enthusiastic attitude wherever she goes.

Wanda managed even while we were chatting, to keep her eye on her customers, pointing out to each one of them all the great buy 1 get 1 free specials in the snack aisle. Bags of treats were flying off the shelves! (This is a convenience store folks!)

Wanda’s coworkers, Alissa, the cashier, and John, the janitorial specialist, (what a clean store) were also very friendly but let Wanda do the talking. Every person who walked through the door, from bleary eyed travelers to seasoned truck drivers, got the V.I.P. treatment from this perky young lady.

I hated to leave but from the look on my husband’s face, I knew it was time to get back on the road. I told Wanda that I would write a column about my great experience at Love’s Travel Stop #376.

She was still smiling as we drove away in the wee hours of the morning!

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