I was driving home during rush hour traffic today. I was trying to hurry home. My husband left his bowling equipment in the car and he was bowling at 6. He called me about 4 and asked me to be home by 5:15. It takes me 40 minutes to drive home so I left right at 4:30.
I was midway through my drive in the heart of traffic and the toll road. Suddenly a red car alarm light went off. I looked at my gauges and saw my car was HOT! My husband had just added Antifreeze the night before so I could not imagine why my car was running hot. I remembered his words, "I was careful to even fill the overflow. You will be fine now." So why was my car saying it was hot?
This had been quite a day. The only day in history that I forgot my cell phone. Now, rushing home, the car alarm light blinking red and the water gauge saying HOT. I thought about trying to drive home with the HOT light on but decided against it. Ten years earlier I did that very thing in my trusty Cavalier. I think the mechanic said I "cracked my engine block" and it cost me $4000 to replace my engine.
I decided to take the next exit off the Toll Road. It was totally unfamiliar territory, but I saw a Firestone station about a block ahead and decided to turn into it.
I parked my car in front of one of the entryways. I rushed up to the lead mechanic. I think he was the lead mechanic because he was the one carrying a clip board. I pleaded, "Can you help me?" I must have looked pitiful and exasperated. He put down his clipboard and said, "What´s wrong?"
Excitedly I explained about my car gauges and not knowing what to do.
It was about 5:00, towards the end of their workday. All 5 mechanics came around to listen to my animated story. They all walked me to my car. The head mechanic lifted the hood. Suddenly it was as if all of the mechanics were frozen. I looked at them. I looked at the engine. There, next to the radiator was the radiator cap, laying neatly upside down on top of the radiator. The mechanics looked at me. I looked at them. We all looked back at the engine.
The words, "My husband just added antifreeze..." were still coming out of my mouth. They did not say a word, merely picked up the cap. I got it. I said, "You mean he didn´t put the cap back on and that´s why my car overheated?"
They looked at me and looked at me. I did not know what they were thinking. Finally the lead mechanic spoke. "Don´t worry. This happens all the time. We will help you but you gotta promise us one thing?"
"You won´t yell at your husband."
I promised I would not.
The car was still overheated and wouldn´t take any antifreeze. They guided me into the waiting area and said not to worry. They would fill up the antifreeze as soon as the car cooled down.
About 20 minutes later, my car was all set. They filled up my antifreeze. They filled up the overflow. They filled up my windshield washer fluid.
They said, "There you go. You are all set."
I had my wallet in my hand. I asked, "How much do I owe you?"
The lead mechanic said, "That´s all right. Its on us." He signalled with his hand with a wave that I owed him nothing.
I was so touched by their act of kindness that I just looked and him. I nodded and mouthed, "Thank you!" I touched my heart twice and sent him my heart. He understood and nodded. As we caught eyes, the eyes of the young mechanic, my motherly eyes glistened a tear in thank you.
For some reason, I don´t know why, I cried all the way home.
I kept thinking, "People can be so wonderful."
These 5 young men were so nice to me. They took care of me. They didn´t know me.
These young men were not rich. They were all American. They were of multi cultural ethnicities. They warmed my heart. They reminded me that people can be and are wonderful and there is hope for our country and for our world!