Saturday, October 1, 2011

A New Hope

I'm usually quite the grumbler, but I have to take a break from complaining for a minute to acknowledge the random act of kindness that was bestowed upon me just a couple of days ago. I had just left FAU when my car stopped working--and I use the term stopped working loosely; in fact, what actually happened is my car lost all power, and sparks were flying up through the hood--in the right lane of Glades Road, a busier-than-not-busy street. Afraid that the car was going to explode (you know, since sparks lead to fire), my friend, Erin, and I ran out of the car as quickly as possible, leaving it in the spot where it stopped.

Once we were a safe distance away, I called my insurance company and talked to a man who informed me that they would reimburse me up to fifty dollars for a tow truck. He then gave me some numbers, which I wrote down on a dollar bill. There was no answer at the first number I called. A man answered at the second number, and we went back and forth for awhile about what could be done with my car and how much it would cost. I don't remember every number that was mentioned, but I do know $165 came up at one point. He wanted to take my car to his shop; I didn't think that was a good idea. After a few minutes, I told him I had to call my husband and would get back to him. When I talked to him, Glenn agreed that my car should be taken to an established garage, preferably a Toyota dealership, but at least to a Firestone or Tires Plus. A Bob's Garage-type place was out of the question.

I called the guy back (admittedly by mistake--I was actually trying to get an estimate from one of the other places), and when I told him my exact situation, about how my car was in the middle of the street and I lived over 30 miles away, he sounded genuinely concerned. He told me there was a Firestone three miles away and that he would tow it there for $55. After telling me he'd be coming in 10 to 15 minutes, we hung up.

About 10 minutes later, the tow truck driver arrived. I explained exactly what had happened to my car, and even though he in no way had to, he opened up the hood to see what was going on. After a minute or so, he saw that the battery had come loose. He said that was the reason my car had turned off, and the reason my car sparked was that the metal from the clamp was rubbing against the metal from the battery. He then tightened a few things, looked at me, and said, "Drive your car home."

Now, I know that may not seem like the nicest thing in the world, but this man could have completely taken advantage of me. He could have towed my car even though it didn't need a towing, making me pay money I didn't need to pay. He could have lied to me just because he was annoyed that he had driven out there in such a hurry for me. He could have done any number of things to a clueless woman standing on the side of the road, panicked. But he didn't. Instead he helped me, doing something for me for absolutely nothing in return but appreciation.

It's no secret that I'm not a lover of people. I read the newspaper and watch the news and cry over the absence of compassion in the world. I lament the loss of the values that I believe people must have had at some time. I mourn the loss of humanity on an almost daily basis. This man, though, this tow truck driver named Huss, made me feel something about the world that I haven't felt in a long time. He made me feel hope.


  1. u need a mechanic friend .. oo wait u have one .. u just dont know it .. lol