Beach vacation, day one. Our cars were packed with beach towels, sunscreen, Scrabble, paperbacks and the several electronic devices that my daughter “needs” for a road trip. (I bit my tongue rather than launch into a “back in my day we played travel bingo and we liked it” tirade.)
About an hour and a half into our drive, we stopped in Waco, Texas for a quick break. Once back in our cars, mine (which had just been serviced that week in preparation for this trip) failed to turnover. Nothing. Just the dreaded click-click-click of a dead battery. Great. Neither we, nor my parents, whom we were caravanning with had jumper cables. Great. The temperature was already creeping up past ninety degrees. And we had our dog in the car with us. Great. Then the nicest thing happened. A man in an old white truck pulled up next to us and asked if he could help. He had jumper cables. He had tools. He had patience and know-how and, in the end he took my dad to a local auto parts store to buy the battery that we needed. He didn’t want to accept the money that we offered as a thank-you. He said, “I just like to help people.” Wow. The entire inconvenience lasted about an hour and was worth every minute because it restored our faith in humanity. It reminded us that there are still good people in the world, willing to take an hour out of their Saturday, in hot, sweaty temperatures to help out some people that they don’t know and will more than likely never see again. Beach lesson #1 – people are good.