Saturday, November 10, 2007

Kindness made my day

Okay this has very little, if not absolutely nothing, to do with writing but I'm posting it anyway. I was having a very bad day. I went to bed upset, and confrontations with different problems were making my day worse and worse. Then I went out to lunch with my grandma. And we were driving along about to turn left on a green arrow when a car coming from a perpendicular direction decided to turn left at the same time although he did not have a green arrow. I swerved and slammed on the brakes avoiding a van slamming into my grandmother. After completing my turn I carried on. Then all of a sudden a young girl comes running jumps over the sidewalk, over the little strip of grass and BAM! she jumps right in front of my car. I once again slam on the brakes, thank goodness I saw her in time, and missed yet another death. Of course both times people honked either at me because they didn't know I was narrowly missing killing people or at the people causing my dramatic driving reactions. So when I pull up to the next stoplight someone is honking again. And I'm thinking it's some ass that's mad at me about one of the previous incidents so my idea is to just not look. I already know what a middle finger looks like. Then my grandma says that it's a woman motioning for me to roll down the window.
I turn and roll down the window and this woman, probably about 60, says "I just wanted to say, you're a really good driver. You avoided two serious accidents that most people would not have even noticed until it was too late."
In shock, I said "thank you," and the light changed so we took off on our merry little ways
but I felt good. My day had gotten a hundred percent better because it is absolutely so rare when someone takes the time to go out of their way to tell you when you are actually doing something well, particularly when driving. I've gotten flipped off a million times and a lot of times I'm certain that I was in the right but whatever. And I try my best to not lose my temper with other drivers because mistakes happen and there's no point in getting angry. But it was so awesome of that woman to let me know that I had done something right for a change. Especially because she was older, I was younger and I feel like most older people think young drivers are careless.
I wish I had more of a chance to let her know that it meant a lot to me. But it was the last thing I was expecting and it happened so fast. Yet, it changed the whole dynamic of my day. So much so that I'm breaking policy and writing about it on my blog that I usually save exclusively for writing related topics. But I guess when you think about anytime I write, regardless of what it is about, it's about writing because I wrote it.
Anyway, I know the odds of the woman ever reading this are about a gazillion to one but to her I say 'thanks'. I sincerely hope that she didn't think I was just some young kid that rolled my eyes and made fun of her for being some weirdo lady. My reaction was the farthest thing from that. And since I have no other way to pass on how it affected me I'm writing it here. Hopefully, it will inspire others to do the same, which is why people write or at least why I do. To inspire others and to show them the other side of the story.
In the end it really kind of was about writing but I think just about everything in my life is.
Now I've got to go out of my way to tell someone something great about them because I'm truly inspired.

*Although it would have been awful, how much more of an entertaining story would this have been had I said that while I was so in shock of the woman's kindness, I took my foot of my brake and rear ended the person in front of me? Here's hoping I don't jinx myself.


D.B. Echo said...

The title of this post made me think it had something to do with Human Kindness. Maybe it will, someday. Or wind up in another story somewhere.

I got a 19.44 lb. Thanksgiving turkey yesterday. Much too big for my dwindling family, but what the heck. It brought to mind the tale of The Turkey Thief.

jenni said...

What a great thing for that lady to do! One time my cousins and I had a discussion about different gestures in traffic and I was saying how when I let someone in they gave me the peace sign and I thought I would use that from now on. My cousin said he does the thumbs up. I flash a peace sign at all of the other Priuses (Pri-i). I should start rolling my window down and telling people they are beautiful or something :) (Since no one is a good driver around here, I really couldn't say that!)

Also, I loved the "alternate ending" to your day. You should write it up as a short story - oh the irony! I would read it aloud in my class. In fact, I might tell it as a story tomorrow! :)

Ashley said...

D.B.- that is a big turkey but who doesn't love left overs.

Jenni- I love the peace sign. I am so stealing that. I just hope something doesn't block the view of my index finger, then it might not be so awesome.