A sweet lesson on patience

Tuesday, May 8, 2012

I spotted a little story this morning and it moved me to tears. So, I thought I'd share it with you, my darlings. If you have five minutes to spare, just grab a few tissues and let yourself be inspired by a wonderful NYC taxi driver who shared one of the most important experiences of his life, as he defines it. xo
 
A NYC taxi driver wrote:
 
I arrived at the address and honked the horn. After waiting a few minutes I honked again. Since this was going to be my last ride of my shift I thought about just driving away, but instead I put the car in park and walked up to the door and knocked... 'Just a minute', answered a frail, elderly voice. I could hear something being dragged across the floor.

After a long pause, the door opened. A small woman in her 90's stood before me. She was wearing a print dress and a pillbox hat with a veil pinned on it, like somebody out of a 1940's movie. By her side was a small nylon suitcase. The apartment looked as if no one had lived in it for years. All the furniture was covered with sheets. There were no clocks on the walls, no knickknacks or utensils on the counters. In the corner was a cardboard box filled with photos and glassware.

'Would you carry my bag out to the car?' she said. I took the suitcase to the cab, then returned to assist the woman. She took my arm and we walked slowly toward the curb. She kept thanking me for my kindness. 'It's nothing', I told her...'I just try to treat my passengers the way I would want my mother to be treated.'

'Oh, you're such a good boy, she said. When we got in the cab, she gave me an address and then asked, 'Could you drive through downtown?'
'It's not the shortest way,' I answered quickly..
'Oh, I don't mind,' she said. 'I'm in no hurry. I'm on my way to a hospice.

 I looked in the rear-view mirror. Her eyes were glistening. 'I don't have any family left,' she continued in a soft voice..'The doctor says I don't have very long.' I quietly reached over and shut off the meter.

'What route would you like me to take?' I asked.

For the next two hours, we drove through the city. She showed me the building where she had once worked as an elevator operator. We drove through the neighborhood where she and her husband had lived when they were newlyweds. She had me pull up in front of a furniture warehouse that had once been a ballroom where she had gone dancing as a girl. Sometimes she'd ask me to slow in front of a particular building or corner and would sit staring into the darkness, saying nothing.

As the first hint of sun was creasing the horizon, she suddenly said, 'I'm tired. Let's go now'.

We drove in silence to the address she had given me. It was a low building, like a small convalescent home, with a driveway that passed under a portico. Two orderlies came out to the cab as soon as we pulled up. They were solicitous and intent, watching her every move. They must have been expecting her.

I opened the trunk and took the small suitcase to the door. The woman was already seated in a wheelchair.

'How much do I owe you?' She asked, reaching into her purse.
'Nothing,' I said
'You have to make a living,' she answered.
'There are other passengers,' I responded.

Almost without thinking, I bent and gave her a hug. She held onto me tightly. 'You gave an old woman a little moment of joy,' she said. 'Thank you.' I squeezed her hand, and then walked into the dim morning light.. Behind me, a door shut. It was the sound of the closing of a life..

 I didn't pick up any more passengers that shift. I drove aimlessly lost in thought. For the rest of that day, I could hardly talk. What if that woman had gotten an angry driver, or one who was impatient to end his shift? What if I had refused to take the run, or had honked once, then driven away?

(Thanks, Megan)

23 comments:

Anonymous said...

Incredibly touching and full of emotion. The part when she thanked him for the little moment of joy, made me very emotional. Thank you, Diana for making my day. Love, Amy.

HiLLjO said...

...
Thank you...

I'm glad to "know" someone who thinks this is important.

Ana Degenaar said...

Wow! This is simply amazing. Such a wonderful, well-written, heart-warming story. My eyes are misty.

Luna said...

Such a lovely read to end a long day. Thanks for sharing :)

kishipsa said...

very moving.... and beautiful....
thank you Diana for the story

jeanette from everton terrace said...

I have been fortunate enough to read this before. Gets me every time. It's beautiful.

Christianna said...

What a beautiful, sweet and touching story! Thank you so much for sharing! People are awesome sometimes, aren't they?

Diana Mieczan said...

Amy, I got all teary reading that part as well. So touching!

Diana Mieczan said...

Totally, Christianna!!!

Vintage Market Place said...

i just lost my grandmother so this really hit me hard.
Blubbering here...oh what a wonderful way of showing people still respect their elders.
Thank you for sharing this Diana
Amy

Mal said...

This is so sweet and touching, thank you for sharing

Mal @ The Chic Geek

Josie said...

'Be kind for everyone you meet is fighting a hard battle.' I try to live by this and offer kindness until someone proves they are not worthy of it.

Tish said...

ugh...ripped my heart

Diana Mieczan said...

Amy, I am SO sorry! xo

Diana Mieczan said...

Josie, I love that!!!

Monica | Hola!design said...

so sweet! so important to be compassionate....
I love Josie's comment! so true.

Chapstick Fanatic said...

i saw this a few days ago. it is awesome.

http://lachapstickfanatique.blogspot.com

Melisande said...

so touching and sweet. i'm tearing up. this made my day.

Vintage Market Place said...

Thank you Diana xoxo

Diana Mieczan said...

Aww...Melisande:)))

little t said...

Sadly, I'm sure those 'what ifs' happen all the time. We can certainly learn from this story- beautiful x

TheChambrayCountess said...

Wow, this made me tear up and smile at the same time. Great story :)

Monique ODB said...

Sad, beautiful and heart-warming. Thank you for posting this story - a reminder to treat everyone with patience and take the time to listen to the elderly.

Related Posts with Thumbnails

exPress-o All rights reserved . Design by Blog Milk