Monday, November 13, 2017

HUG THAT MADE MY DAY


I was heading to town to meet some friends for lunch and decided since I was a bit early, I'd stop at Walmart and pick up some needed bread. I try to make my town trips multipurpose.

As I was heading out to the parking lot with my loaf of bread, I saw her.  She was a really old lady--yes even older than me.  She was tiny.  I doubt she carried a hundred pounds and wore a long coat that came to her ankles.  She also wore "that look."  The look that says, "Where in blue blazes is my car."

Now I have owned that same bewildered look on occasion so it was easy to recognize. We smiled at eachother and she confessed that she couldn't find her car.

She told me it was a white Buick. You ever notice how many white cars fill parking lots?  I told her to try her key fob to see if her car would beep or flash lights.  Nothing. The remote looked rather worn out so we started walking.

Up and down the rows we went. Here I am a bit embarrassed to admit that little lady blew my doors off. She could flat out scoot and she was pushing a cart to boot while I carried only a loaf of bread.

By now I realized I would probably be late for the luncheon but there was no way I was leaving her. After a while  I told her we should divide and I took off in an opposite direction.

Finally--I spotted a white Buick several rows over so I started hollering to get her attention hoping it was hers.  When she got fifty feet away from the car, the fleet footed old woman wearing no glasses, read the 4 inch dealer decal on the bumper aloud and let out a delighted yell.

I have never seen a child at Christmas more excited. She then reached up and gave me a really long, tight hug. She said, "I don't even know your name but I will never forget you."

I told her I was just paying forward exactly what someone had done for me once.

Yes I was a little late for lunch but it was worth it. She made me feel good all day. I needed that. A case of just a tiny bit of effort and getting a huge return.

You ever have a parking lot devour your car, making you wear "that look"? 

64 comments :

  1. Oh, I love this story. When we go the extra mile to lend a hand to another, the reward is ours. I was just reading a post about the gifts that folks with dementia can give. While the analogy is not quite the same, the ability to give to others is a profoundly rich and satisfying experience.

    And yes, I have "lost" my car in parking lots. But funny thing, it only seems to happen when my hands are very full and my bags are especially heavy!

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    1. Carole,
      You know it is something we all know--it is good to give--yet sometimes we are surprised at how good it really is.
      I agree, never do I lose mine when I am only carrying a loaf of bread:)

      Delete
  2. What a great story and it has a HUG in it! I think it's a wonderful thing you did, and boy does she have my admiration, as well as you. Made my day, too. :-)

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    1. Djan,
      It was a hug you would have approved of:) So glad you got a lift also.

      Delete
  3. Patti, that's a wonderful story. I have seen people trying to find their cars and have always whispered a little prayer for them, but never actually went to help them. That was so good of you. I need to put myself out there more.

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    1. Rian,
      Thank you. Hope you do. The reward is so worth the little time lost.

      Delete
  4. Yes. I'm afraid to admit almost every single time I go to the city. Here at my regular hometown grocery, I always park on the same row, number 7. If I ever dare to change it, I am doomed to stand there with the look. My brain has lost it's recall value. You were so sweet to help her. Bless her heart!

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    1. Terri,
      Me too. I am good locally but get me in a strange parking lot and I sometimes get that look also:)

      Delete
  5. Excellent feel-good story!

    Several times, and it was before you could boop-boop the key fob. I once almost reported my VW as stolen but turns out I was in the wrong side of the lot...got turned around in the store.

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    1. joeh,
      Thank you. I have done that same thing only mine was on the turnpike. I was heading North and I ended up looking in the South parking lot. Oops.

      Delete
  6. What a fabulous story for a Monday morning. It is always a delight to help someone else out and have that good feeling that you have "paid it forward". Smiling just thinking about what a goodie you are. Yes of course I wander like those of our kind......always an adventure. xoxo Oma Linda

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    1. Linda W,
      I think we all have moments we would like to pay forward and are just grateful when the opportunity presents itself.
      Sometimes I think lost cars is Natures way of seeing we get some exercise.

      Delete
  7. I've struggled many times to find my car in a parking lot, at night, in the rain.

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    1. Stephen,
      Well at least you have extenuating circumstances. Mine usually occur in broad daylight:)

      Delete
  8. Love the story. Last year I was driving very slowly in a parking lot when a toddler suddenly ran from the sidewalk. I stopped and the mother grabbed the child and ran away. There were four women standing on the sidewalk who saw the whole thing. As I approached them, one of them said, "We saw that and you need a group hug." So we all hugged and I felt much more relaxed. Amazing how the moments with strangers can affect us.

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    1. Carolyn,
      Yikes, that had to have been scary. How neat those ladies gave you that needed hug. They were pretty special.

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    2. Yes, especially since they stood there waiting until I had parked the car and walked to the sidewalk. They were also very critical of the mother for not staying to apologize.

      Delete
  9. What a wonderful, feel good story! You are a kind person and you are right - paying it forward is a lovely thing to do. There is something special about helping someone we don't know and will probably never see again. An anonymous act of kindness is often the best kind!

    Oh how well I know the feeling of losing your car in the parking lot. I actually have had nightmares about it!

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    1. Bonnie,
      Good to see you again. Anonymous is the best. I understand about the nightmares. Often I will dream my car is stolen and I spend the night walking all over trying to find it. Not one of the fun dreams:)

      Delete
  10. What a wonderful story... AND I too would have a hard time leaving that woman until she found her car... You deserve a hug from me --and from all of us.... I'm sure we all have lost our cars at one time or another in a parking lot.... KUDOS...

    Hugs,
    Betsy

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    1. Betsy,
      Aww, thanks for the hug. You can never get too many. And, nope, I couldn't leave her. Not sure what we would have done if we didn't find it.

      Delete
  11. I remember in our younger years coming out of the Grand Old Opry in the pouring rain and forgetting where we parked our gray rental car. A half hour later, soaked to the skin, ours was finally one of the few left in the lot so we "found" it. Ever since then, I take notice of exactly where I'm parked! I love those moments when we connect with others by just doing something decent.

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    1. Barb,
      Now that was unfortunate and funny--cept for the getting soaked. I think those of us who no longer lose our cars, had such an experience that trained us.

      Delete
  12. I just had a moment of fear the other day. I thought I knew where I'd parked, but apparently I didn't. But thankfully I was in range of the remote and though I'm sure I may have freaked out the people walking by the car alarm reminded me!

    Very kind of you to help the lady in the lot. Perhaps a small thing to you, but obviously it meant the world to her.

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    Replies
    1. Eileen,
      Those remotes are wonderful. My car is too old to have one so I have to be aware. I have had one go off behind me and it gave me a start. I was just glad we found it.

      Delete
  13. Far too many times have i had to wander around clicking the alarm. Isn't it nice to get when we give?

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    1. Olga,
      I really need to get me one of those. Yes it is. Huge return for little effort.

      Delete
  14. I haven't had an experience like that in quite some time. Roger does all the driving lately, and I keep track of where we park. It's a good thing one of us can remember. Nice story, Patti!

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    1. robin,
      Having a good co-pilot is the best defense. You do your job well.

      Delete
  15. Indeed I have. And yes we have a white car. Your were a guardian angel that day Patti and there's a special place in heaven for your type....:)

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    1. TB,
      Feel for you. There really are few other colors than white and shades of black.
      Thanks so much.

      Delete
  16. A great story, a good deed, two happy hearts! Well done.

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    1. Linda R,
      Thanks so much. Wish I could be so succinct.

      Delete
  17. Been there done that ha ha, it feels really good to help someone out like that and for you to get a big hug like that just makes it totally worth it.

    Funny how many cars look like yours when you misplace it in a parking lot.

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    1. Jimmy,
      Ha ha, so true. Just when we think we are original.

      Delete
  18. Kudos Patti for helping the little ol lady! I forgot where I had parked my SUV in an airport parking lot, once. After that I have paid close attention, to the point of writing it down or making a note on my phone.

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    1. Brig,
      Yikes, airport parking lots are huge. Smart moves. I guess there is even an app these days that will find your car for you.

      Delete
  19. Yep, I've lost my car too many times and now I try to park in the same area of the parking lot so I won't have to walk so far. I have used my key to sound the horn a time or two.

    Once, in the SDC parking lot at Branson, BG and I both couldn't find our car and we walked miles. That lot is huge!

    You were so sweet to help that dear lady...hugs to you for being so kind.

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    1. Cheryl,
      Thanks for the hugs. I try to park in the same area also, it helps. I think areas with big parking lots ought to hire attendants in golf carts just for that purpose.

      Delete
  20. I don't drive, so no, that hasn't happened to me. When my daughter exits her car, she stands a moment and takes note of where in the parking lot she is in relation to the store, nearby trees etc. She has no trouble finding her car. Many years ago, however, I was told a story about my stepfather, who searched every floor of a parking garage without finding his car. It was in the parking garage two blocks over.

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    1. River,
      Mercy about your stepfather. Pretty sure I would have reported my car stolen

      Delete
  21. what an absolutely wonderful thing to do! You deserved that long hug!

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    1. Silver Willow,
      Aww thanks. I considered it over payment but appreciated though I wish I had done the same to the gentleman who bailed me out several years ago.

      Delete
  22. I did that the other day. I was so distracted by an awful shopping experience, and then I could find my car when I came out of the store. Poor lady. So good that you were there to help her.

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    1. bellarum,
      I do believe it happens to all of us at one time or another. I'd like to think that if I hadn't, someone else would have.

      Delete
  23. What a neat story! And just in time for the season of giving to begin. I do my best to always park in the same place or within a few spaces of it. I'll bet her key fob needed a new battery.

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    1. Jean R,
      Thank you. That was my thought also about the fob and she said she was going to her dealer to see if they could fix it.

      Delete
  24. Dear Patti, when I could drive, I always parked at the very back of every parking lot so as to get a walk in that day. So finding my car was mostly easy.

    As to you and this sprite of a woman you met, I'm just tickled pink that the paths of the two of you crossed. That you recognized that look on her face and that she recognized that she'd met a kindred spirit.

    And yes, I can see you smiling throughout the day. It's so wonderful when others touch our lives with goodness and tenderness and laughter. Peace.

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    1. Dee,
      Parking at the back is a great idea. Get our exercise and easy to find.

      Delete
  25. And now you have paid it forward so all of us can smile too. And once, while hosting some Swedes, I lost my car in the Disneyland parking lot. Trust me, that is a very big lot!

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    1. Inger,
      Yikes, I have seen Disney World's parking lot and I imagine they are similar. That had to have been daunting.

      Delete
  26. That’s fantastic! I want you in my parking lot next time I lose my car. That’s such a frustrating feeling when the car isn’t where I thought I left it. Hasn’t happened for a long time and can’t recall the last time it did.

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    1. joared,
      Ha ha, ya suppose I could get a part time job:)) I think we have all done it at least once and usually that makes us much more aware.

      Delete
  27. I don't drive so just tend to lose my bike ... and my glasses , keys , the remote control , umbrella ...
    Any help is always welcome as is meeting such a sympathetic helper

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    1. SmitoniusAndSonata,
      Welcome. Thank you for stopping by and commenting. Kind of envy you being able to ride a bike to where you are going.

      Delete
  28. Wonderful Story. I'll feel good all day and I didn't even help.

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    1. Barbara,
      Thank you. So glad I could recycle that feeling.

      Delete
  29. First, I have to admit I am directionally challenged and cannot find my way out of a paper bag. I went to the mall one time and when I came out of a store to go to my car I realized I didn't have a clue where it was. There were benches outside the store and so I sat in one and thought, "I am going to have to sit here until the parking lot is empty." So, I sat there for a while and then suddenly, there it was. My car where I had parked it was just a few feet from me. I get that feeling a lot when I come out of any store unless before I go in I make a point of looking to see exactly where I have parked before I go in. You did a very nice thing for that lady.

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    1. Snickelfritz,
      That turned out after starting out awful. Anymore, I am really careful also where I park. Thank you, I was just returning the favor a kind gentleman gave me a while back.

      Delete
  30. I "lost" my car in a multi-story parking garage--couldn't remember what floor I was on!!

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    1. Fran,
      Yikes, I think I'd have called a cab and had them drive me around the garage:)

      Delete
  31. Thanks for reminding me of one of the worst days of my life ! I had stopped at one of those outlet places with about 50 stores in it. Being very intelligent I wrote down exactly were I'd parked and was so glad I did when I saw my car. The only problem was that I couldn't find my keys !!! It took me about 2 hours but I backtracked into all the stores where I'd been and, lo and behold, I found then sitting atop a bright blue sweater that I'd decided not to buy. I'm still not much better on the keys stuff but at least I've given up shopping in malls.

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    1. Ginnie,
      That is the stuff of nightmares. Amazing that you found them. Think that would have burned me for malls too.

      Delete
  32. What a lovely story, and why did I miss this in my reader. I think I blogged once about losing my car outside JC Penny's. I had no phone and I couldn't even remember what the car looked like as it was a rental. The relief I felt when I pressed the key fob and a car lit up.

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