Thank You, and Paying It Forward

This will be a quick post as I have work this morning but it’s past due.

Last weekend I was taking my dog Major into the self-groomers at Petco Unleashed for some father son bonding time. I’ve been there about 3 times before with Major, and this was nothing special. Except that this time Major decided to leave a present in the trunk of my Xterra before we got there. Being as I didn’t get him as a puppy, I suspect he’s 9-10 years old now and even though he’s not quite yet incontinent, car trips sometimes leave us with a steamy mess of Major.

Last weekend was also blazing hot, about 96 in La Mesa, so when I arrived at the parking lot of Petco I had to clean up the mess as quickly as possible. Naturally Major had lost his footing during the ride and managed to get it everywhere. I had no one to hold the leash so I tied him to my rims while he rested under the Xterra for some shade while I cleaned up the mess. I was short on cleaning supplies, and was having a lot of difficulty.

Then backup arrived. A woman approached me in the parking lot, nice as ever, and saw I was having some difficulty. She had three kids with her to boot. It was a hot day, and I was a stranger, covered in filth, accompanied by a menacing looking dog. For convenience, for fear of being assaulted by a strange man, or bit by a huge dog, she could have continued on her way, but she approached anyways and asked if I could use any help.

We chit chatted for a minute or so. She understood my situation as she was a dog lover, and had just gone through the horrible experience of euthanizing two older dogs herself, earlier in the year. She hustled to her car, and without being asking she returned bearing gifts. She had a full roll of paper towels and a pack of baby/cleaning wipes. It wasn’t a steam cleaner but it was 100x better than what I was working with, and it spared me a lot of stress, embarrassment, and sweat as I sat there in the sizzling blacktop parking lot desperately trying to clean crap out of my car, with my poor dog trying to escape the heat by hiding under it.

It was incredibly helpful, and my day could have been a lot worse had it not been for that lady’s help. To the unknown mother of three who helped me and more importantly, helped my dog when we needed it, THANK YOU SO MUCH. You made my day. You made my week. And I will always remember and be grateful for what you did.

Paying it forward

Last night I had the opportunity to pay it forward, and maybe coincidentally, or maybe by fate, I happened to be with Major again when it happened.

I was taking Major on his evening walk, and there was a guy across the street crawled under his car, clearly working on something. He had his front tires jacked up, and whatever he was doing you can tell he looked a little flustered. The sun was setting and though the sky was still rosy pink and orange, it was dark out, and I could only imagine how dark it was under the car. I didn’t think too much of it, and went on my walk.

About 40 minutes later as our walk was winding down and I was going back home, I saw the guy was still out there, under his car. It had gotten much darker, and he was holding his cell phone in his mouth as a makeshift flashlight. His wife/girlfriend sitting on the curb next to him.

I took Major inside and grabbed this funky kick-stand flashlight thing. It seems gimmicky and like something I never thought would serve a purpose, but it earned it’s stripes last night. I walked out and approached the couple and asked if he could use any help, and handed him the flashlight. The man, already flustered, had a slight sigh of relief when he no longer had to wrestle with his wrench while balancing a flashlight. I crawled under the car with him to see what he was having difficulty with. Turns out all he needed was a 3/8 inch socket extender, which I have an army of. I ran back home and a minute later the guy was making some real progress on replacing his water pump. He said he could take it from there.

I woke up this morning and the flashlight and tool were sitting next to each other right by my front door, and the car was gone. Hope it all worked out brother.

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