Sunday, January 14, 2024

Kindness of Strangers

Spoiler: *We* are the strangers
It is cold today. The high temp is expected to be -1C, and there's a -27 wind chill. The Husband reluctantly left the house to fill his car with gas. Before he left, he layered up with thermal undergarments and extra headwear.
He dressed this way to DRIVE somewhere.
It. Is. Cold.
So, you understand how odd it must have been when later I saw a man standing on the sidewalk across the street from our house. The sight of anyone being outside at all today caught my attention. He was consulting his cell phone with bare hands that must have been freezing painfully every second. A sled rested at his feet.
After a bit, he put some heavy duty gloves on, picked up the sled, and moved along. He stopped again at the corner and consulted his phone again.
I called The Husband to the window.
"What do you suppose is happening here? Is he lost? Do you think he's trying to meet up with someone? Is he looking for the sledding hill? It's really cold out. I wanna ask him if he needs help, but I don't know if he needs any."
We watched him as he continued up the street and disappeared from view. And then we kept watching. It wasn't long before his head came bobbing back. Yeah, he was lost.
"Do you mind if I holler out the door to ask if he wants help?" I asked The Husband.
"Please do. If he *is* looking for the sledding hill, I'll give him a ride."
And without even waiting to find out what the guy's story was, The Husband went to put on his coat and boots.
Through a short shouted exchange from our porch, I found out the young man was, indeed, looking for the sledding hill, and yes, he would gladly accept a ride.
I watched from the window as The Husband greeted the man in our driveway, and they both climbed into our car and drove off.

When he came back, The Husband told me the young man was new to town, had moved in 5 months ago.  He was just bored and thought he'd go sledding. Google had told the hill was just a mile from his apartment, why not walk? He'd turned at the wrong corner and ended up on our street. He wasn't cold at all, he'd dressed properly.
But dang, y'all.
How fast did my wonderful man jump up and volunteer to help out a stranger out in the cold?
That's top notch, first class humanity. Every day I find even more reasons to love him more.

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