Wednesday, October 9, 2013

Grabbing a chance to help another working man

The man's name was McDaniel.
Nate was his first name, I think.
I never saw him before and may not see him again, even in a small town like ours.
But our chance meeting Wednesday evening was one of those moments that make the world go 'round.
I was headed home, driving east on Cortez Road and turned right on Fifth Street.
As I slowed for the stop sign at Orlando Avenue, I spotted McDaniel in his beat up work van, ladder on top, trying to get the beast restarted.
He nodded at me. I nodded at him.
I drove on for a few seconds and slowed down.
Got to give the man a hand, I said to myself.
I looked in the rearview mirror and he was out in the street, driver's side door open, trying to push the vehicle to a safer location.
I wheeled my pickup into an apartment complex parking lot, locked it and ran toward the man and his van.
Before I got there, a young man had joined McDaniel, using the passenger side door to push.
When I got there, I just leaned on the van's caved-in back door and pushed, driving my legs like I did hitting a blocking sled many, many moons ago.
It felt good.
"Where we going?" I yelled to McDaniel, who shouted something about getting his van into the driveaway just ahead.
We made it a few minutes later, safely.
McDaniel thanked us and asked if he could get us anything.
Not a chance.
The kid, whose name I didn't get, shook hands with me.
"Just helping another working man," he said to the McDaniel, who wore a Sherwin Williams T-shirt.
I asked if he needed a lift somewhere.
"No," he said. "I got my boys coming to help me."
I shook hands with McDaniel and headed back to my truck and home.
Just helping out another working man.

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