Friday, June 12, 2009

A failure to help


I am a fast lane freeway driver.

Freeways are boring, especially when one is traversing the same one that one has traversed for decades.

So I do not dawdle.

There is a drawback to this, however. One, my view is invariably one of a long, grimy concrete jersey wall. The scenery two lanes over to my right is just a vague green blur.


Two, I like to help people. Just always have. Was raised that way. Going 70-ish on the freeway, by the time your eyes register someone on the side of the road hefting a spare tire and your brain beats down all the reasons that you shouldn't stop, you are a quarter mile ahead of said person and your chance to help is gone.

Today, I espied a young lady crouched in the most dangerous of places, on the freeway shoulder beside her driver's side tire, preparing to change a flat, or possibly already in the last stages of doing so.

Stop and help? A mere second or so of cudgeling my inner wimp into submission -- I'd be late for work, I might die, etc. -- and I was ready to be of assistance. But of course, I couldn't. I was too far left and too far ahead.

Nevertheless, I decided to turn around at the next exit and go back. I did, but She and the car were gone. She'd done the job just fine on Her own, which is entirely to be expected of a sensible Woman in the 21st Century.

I couldn't help but feel that my need for speed cost me this morning, the chance to dirty my hands but brighten a day.

3 comments:

Lone Grey Squirrel said...

Gentlemen like you are way too rare these days.

Chase March said...

I think too many people these days think that "someone else will help" or that "everyone has a cell phone these days" or "they don't need my help," and this stops people from helping.

But like they say, it's the thought that counts. It was great that you stopped even if you couldn't help.

kat said...

You would have brightened mine!

I so appreciate the times I have been road assisted!