Tuesday, February 26, 2008

The Kindness of Strangers

I want to send a very public shout-out to a few people tonight.

In a freak accident, where thank God nobody was hurt, my daughter and I ended up in a snow and ice-filled ditch, both front tires of my car firmly entrenched in pure white hell. With my daughter firmly strapped in her car seat, I got out of my car and was knee-deep in snow, trying to dig out my tires with my snow brush. Police were rushing all over, doing what they could for the other dozen or so cars that were involved, but I wasn't a priority since nobody was hurt and my car hadn't completely flipped over. Twenty seven cars drove by me--several paused long enough to see my daughter sobbing in the backseat, only to proceed to drive right by me. My dad, who I had called from my cell phone to come and get my daughter, couldn't make it to me in his truck because the police had the road shut down right where he needed to get through. My tears were freezing in the frigid temperatures as I made a call to AAA, only to be told that it would be an hour wait for a tow truck. Car number twenty-eight pulled up next to me. It was a woman with a vehicle full of kids, and she called out, "Honey, what can I do to help you? Can I give you a lift? Sit with your daughter? Anything?" Twenty-seven cars before her didn't even stop to see if I was okay. Here she was, a complete stranger, offering her help. There wasn't anything she could do, but I so appreciated her offer. So, thank you, kind woman in the gray SUV.

As the tangle of cars gradually cleared, a kind police officer made his way back to me, blew some raspberries at my crying daughter and told me to hang in there. He promised to get someone over to help me...and he did.

A Good Samaritan in a Hummer came over and offered, along with the help of his friends and a few strangers who had finally noticed my plight, to get me out of the ditch and safely back on the road. The police officer and three other men positioned themselves at the hood of my car, while two other men latched my Saturn to the Hummer. On the count of three, that Hummer pulled while the men pushed and I got back on the road.

I shook each of their hands and got their names--I only remember Anthony, John and Demetrius. I forgot the names of the others, but I remember their faces. And the police officer wouldn't give me his name because he didn't believe that I owed him any thanks. All he wanted was for me to get safely home. And I did.

Thank you, so much, to every person who helped me and my daughter tonight. You stopped to help just because. There was nothing in it for you, and that gives me a good, warm feeling in my soul. After a long, bad day, it was nice to know that I'm right in continuing to have faith in the human race.

6 comments:

Katie said...

I strongly beieve that what comes around, goes around. So you were helped becasue you're a good person. And those good people that helped you will also see a day when the random act of kindness finds its way back to them.

Marni said...

Thank you for sharing this... sometimes you need to hear/read stories of good samaritans to get rid of the awful thoughts in your head...

Does that make sense?

It's nice to hear that there are GOOD people still out there.

Margaret said...

I am so relieved that you and my birthday buddy are safe.

Hugs and kisses, dear. HUGS AND KISSES!

Cheryl said...

I read this with tears in my eyes. I'm so glad that you finally got the help you needed. It really was a lesson as to how different people can be. The indifferent ones, and the ones that show care for a fellow human being. I'm so sorry you had to go through this. It must have been so scary.

Jim Latchford said...

"For I know the plans I have for you," says the Lord. "They are plans for good and not for diaster...to give you a future and a hope." - Jeremiah 29:11

Sometimes "the kindness of stangers" is a little late in arriving because these angels are elsewhere doing God's bidding or He has yet to whisper in their ears that they are needed. Number 28 was one as was the gentleman wearing the poiliceman's uniform.

That you and your daughrter are safe is thanks enough.

jAMiE said...

So glad the two of you are safe a nd sound...so glad you got the help you needed from those wonderful people..kudos to them.

I left something for you on my blog Martha, when you get a moment, please stop by and pick it up, k.

Take care,
Jamie