With the flick of a pen, some unexpected holiday cheer flew like a flash through a north Phoenix restaurant, all to the wondering eyes of an employee who is nine months pregnant.
Sarah Clark, a server and bartender at Pita Jungle near Interstate 17 and Happy Valley Road, discovered Saturday that a customer had left her a $900 tip. Clark, 29, is expecting her first child Jan. 8.
“You always hear about these happening, but you never expect to be the recipient of it,” Clark said. “It’s a huge, huge help for me and my family.”
Clark and her fiancé will both have to miss time from their jobs in the restaurant industry, where paid time off is rare. Her fiancé is scheduled to have surgery Thursday to repair a leg injury.
Clark said she didn’t notice the tip until after the woman had picked up a take-out order and left.
“I couldn’t believe what I was looking at at first because it was such a high amount. $900 is a lot of money. It took a while for it to set in, and once it did I cried for a little while,” she said.
The customer, who Clark did not identify, is also pregnant. Clark said she and the customer had chatted on a few occasions about their pregnancies.
The tipster, who Clark said was accompanied by her mother, left a note on the bill: "This is God's money -- He gave it to us so we could give it to you. God bless.” The bill was originally for $61.30.
Clark has been a Pita Jungle employee for seven years and said customers have always been generous, “but nothing to this extent.”
“I don’t know if she really understands how much this is going to help us this season,” Clark said. “Me being on maternity leave and him being out of work [while recovering from the surgery], we’re not going to be making any income. So this is really going to help with rent and other bills and things like that.”
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