It was the best of times, it was the worst of times. That is how a recent Friday could have been summed up. After an incredibly stressful but unique week, I was happy to be driving home to face a less stressful but very full weekend. My family awaited my arrival and I looked forward to getting some work around the house done.
As I left work and prepared to drive home, my car wouldn't start. I hoped it was just the battery and I looked around for someone that could help me. I had jumper cables and I knew how to use them, I just needed another car for assistance. I quickly spotted a young woman leaving the yoga studio by my office. I called to her and asked for some help. She immediately closed off and started dialing her phone. I guess it's because I look so threatening in my Friday casual clothes and my 2005 Honda Accord. It was clear from the beginning that she did not want to help me.
I think she thought I had set up a jumper cable sting operation and that I was getting ready to prey upon her newly sculpted leanness. She pulled her car over but was hesitant about every single move, "I don't even know where my battery is." Really???.. geez. I finally let her off the hook and waved her away, saying that someone else would help me. She quickly jumped in her car, locked her door and drove away - not even looking back.
I did find someone else immediately. She was eager to help and I was able to get my car started and be on the road home to my kids in less than two minutes. The difference between these two women was night and day. One resided in a world of paranoia and selfishness. The first drove a BMW, talked on her iPhone while carrying her yoga mat and I never saw her smile once. The second drove a Toyota and wore a big ol' smile. One was fearful and the other was confident. I understand the fear; being single means I do many things on my own, but that is learning. It is the rudeness that is difficult to move past.
Being open to new experiences and trying things you have never done are just as important as maintaining an everyday routine. Had I not helped someone jump their car 30 years ago, I would probably still be sitting in that parking lot on that Friday. And while I am a huge proponent of being safe, I also recognize when a decision or action is made that will be of benefit. There comes a time when stepping out of your comfort zone is a learning opportunity. Unless of course, the student is a know-it-all, with an iPhone and a BMW.