There may be a thousand ways to say, ‘Happy Birthday!’ but the sweetest of all may very well be a special chocolate message that was recently served up by an amazingly thoughtful restaurant staff.
Creating natal felicitations in warm liquid cocoa was nothing new at London’s Luciano by Gino D’Acampo restaurant, but for birthday girl Natalie Te Paa, who is totally blind, the best wishes were spelled out in Braille.
What gave the message an even greater meaning was that there was no advance planning involved. When the restaurant crew learned the dinner Te Paa was sharing with friend Claire Sara was a birthday celebration, they took it upon themselves to find and recreate the Braille translation that summed up their best wishes in well-chilled chocolate.
Te Paa could barely believe her fingertips as she traced over the raised confectionary dots.
“My mind was blank for a second and then I was like, ‘Is this in Braille?’” Ta Paa told TODAY. “I’ve never had anything happen like that before. It was wild. They just really did go above and beyond.”
Dinner companion Sara recorded Te Paa’s delighted reaction to what had become a very different kind of surprise party and posted the jubilant footage to TikTok.
While restaurant manager Giovanni Galluccio maintains the impromptu gesture was simply part of the customer service they strive to extend to all their patrons, clocking in with close to 16 million views to date, the internet judged the extraordinary act of kindness extra special.
As Te Paa told TODAY, “The fact that people have responded so much and so well to it just shows how much the world needs kindness right now, how much the world needs a message of hope, needs to see people doing things and going above and beyond for each other.”
“So take heart despite how broken the world is right now,” the viral video caption reads, “true kindness still exists.”
To paraphrase M&M’s iconic tagline—that’s one message sure to “melt in your hearts, not in your hands.”