We had an experience that no one wants- a broken down truck in the middle of no where, in the pouring down rain, early in the morning before church. What started as a panicked “what are we going to do?” turned into a testament to the niceness of people.
After sitting with the truck for several minutes, it was obvious it wasn’t going to start. AND we did not have a clue what was wrong with it; after all we had just had it serviced from hood to tail.
We decided to call AAA. We have a membership and towing is free within 3 miles. That’s all well and good, but in small towns nothing is open on Sunday. When asked “where are we towing you to?” we answered “we have no idea.” We hoped that in the 90 minute wait we could find a place open on a Sunday. Our church is 60 minutes from us, so towing us home was not really an option–that would be one expensive tow!
We are pretty new here and we don’t know many folks yet at church, but hubby had been to a men’s retreat and met some nice men, so he hunted in his cell phone for a number to call. He came upon one and called their home. It was early and his wife answered. Hubby explained our predicament and our objective. We didn’t need them to come and get us or anything but we wondered if ANYTHING was open that we could tow our car into for a look.
She was the first highlight and testament to niceness. She hung up and started hunting. She called and called around to places she knew of. How nice is that? Unfortunately no one was.
We thanked her sincerely for her time and trying and looked at each other. Hummmm…what’s plan b?
About that time our tow came. Big ol’ dude came walking up to the car in the rain and said “what’s up and where are you getting towed to?” We must have looked like we just fell off the turnip truck as we said “we don’t know and we don’t know.”
He took pity on us and said “try to start your car.”. Hubby did and he said “you got air in a line, open the hood.” We did as instructed and he pushed on something and air released. Truck still a no go however. He said “you need starter fluid; you got some?”. To which we answered, “no you don’t use that on a diesel.” He grinned and said “oh yeah you can.” I’ll go up the road to the gas station and find you some.”
Wow, OK! We will wait here… (where would we go?) We had hope.
But when he returned, he couldn’t find anything open either. He said “let’s go to Walmart-get in the tow truck.” We hopped in, he connected up our truck for the tow and off the three of us went to Walmart to buy the starter fluid. We were still concerned about using it on a diesel, but we had to put our trust in him. We had nothing else at the moment!
The dude let off our truck, waited around while we made the purchase and then used it himself on our truck to get it going! WOW again. And the charge was “zero.” He had towed us within the three miles, and wasn’t going to charge us for us other efforts. We gave him a nice tip and told him to go get a good breakfast somewhere. We did the same and then went to late church mass. We found ourselves in disbelief over our misfortune in the early hours but our fortune in such nice folks.
I know there are nice people everywhere, but it seems to me that in a small town you just run into it more. There is more of a “help your neighbor” feel. Like the man that stopped by our house one day to help get our tractor out of a ditch. Or another time when our tractor was stuck up to it’s belly in mud and a farmer down the way brought by heavy tow straps for us to use and said he’d pick them up on another day when he drove by. We did not know any of these folks, but they saw a need and stopped to lend a hand.
I love it here in small town USA. I love all the niceties that I encounter in seemingly hopeless situations. How about you? What’s something that someone, you did not know, did you for you lately? How did it make you feel?