The Providence of Starting

I was talking with a friend the other day about this coffee shop idea.  I shared with him my ideas for names, and as I was rattling off dozens of ridiculous names, he said “Stop.  That one right there.”

For Sale Sign on Building

image credit: Diana Parkhouse on Flickr

He whipped around and typed the domain name into GoDaddy to see if it was available, but it was not.  So we added the word ‘coffee’ to the end of it, and I quickly settled on that as a potential name.  I ran back to my office and bought the domain.  For ten dollars, if the idea doesn’t move forward, it’s not a big loss.

He recommended I also grab the pinterest, facebook, and twitter handles for the domain name as well, so I did.  Continuity of branding is key to good social media and search engine results.  Turns out my friend is good at more than just helping young people with money.

I was satisfied.

We continued talking about it, though, and as we looked at the original site again, he encouraged me to reach out to the owner of the site.  It had been registered 4 years ago, but nothing had been done with it.  It had WordPress on it, and an empty shell of a service.  I thought it would never happen, that was too good of an idea to let go for what I was willing to offer.

According to the Whois information, the site was registered to a gentleman in Abilene, Texas.  Where I was born, no kidding.

I called him up and introduced myself and my idea, and said I wanted to buy his domain name.  I had about $50 to $100 max I was willing to offer.  He reminisced about the early days of his project for a bit, then offered the domain name to me. FOR. FREE.

I was blown away.

I told him I was grateful, and that I would make a donation to a local charity in his name in lieu of payment.

It’s still amazing that this stranger (not really though- he’s a Texan, I’m a Texan- you get it, right?!?) was willing to help me move toward this dream of serving others through coffee and scones.

We initiated and completed the domain name transfer in a matter of minutes despite some begging from his cousin not to let it go so easily, and I quickly began work developing the site.  It’s got a long ways to go, but mostly I wanted to install WordPress and secure the site against unauthorized access.

Have you ever received an unexpected gift?  Did you ever receive help in something you were working for in an unexpected place?

Maybe you’ve helped somebody else out, without knowing it.

I’d love to hear your comments.

  • http://twitter.com/patrickoconnell patrickoconnell

    Rockin and inspirational story. Can’t wait to see where this leads you.