An Unexpected Detour

By Judy Berman

A hectic week at work and a mound of chores at home made a quiet retreat sound real appealing.

I was taking a leisurely drive thru the village on the way to my favorite nature center when I spotted an elderly woman walking along the side of the road. She’d stop, turn and look at each of the cars – either concerned she’d be hit or looking for a ride.

The latter, I thought, as I drove past. A few blocks later, I decided, “what the heck, check it out” and turned around. I made a U-turn in a side street, stopped and asked if she’d like a ride. She said yes.

“It’s just a ways up, about a mile from here,” she said, referring to the corner of the street she lived on.

She told me she was 81 and gave up driving years ago.

On one of her feet, I noticed an open cut near the top of her blue moccasin. Maybe the blister was from an ill-fitting shoe.

As she got out of my car, the woman thanked me just before she headed toward her home.

I had more to be grateful for. That short ride just reminded me of that.

COPYRIGHT NOTICE: Judy Berman and earthrider, 2011-15. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to (Judy Berman) and (earthrider,, or earthriderdotcom) with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

Photo credit: morguefile

  1. How thoughtful and kind of you to help this woman! And, my goodness, an 81-year-old woman, at that! Makes me feel more grateful, too, Judy. Thanks for sharing and helping us keep things in perspective.

    1. She was pretty spry for a woman who was 81. That brief ride and short chat will stick with me for a long time. She appeared to be so at-ease with the world and was very likable. Any worries I thought I had before I stopped just seemed so inconsequential after she left.

  2. How kind of you Judy! I’ll be reminded of your random act of kindness the next time life presents me with someone in need. Thank you for sharing your lovely story with us!

    1. Thank you, Ollin. I’ve done this type of thing – giving rides to strangers – maybe, twice in my life and hesitated each time before I did so. Sad to say, we have to be too cautious in this world. Both times, however, I was glad I did.

  3. What a kind thing to do.
    Things like this are great reminders to be grateful for what we do have and also keep us connected to one another. I think little acts like this help to break down barriers between people.

    1. This woman’s unspoken story, I feel, was each day is a gift. I’m reminded of this because of Louie Schwartzberg’s video about Gratitude on TED. If we stop to listen, each person has a story to tell, a story worth sharing. Thank you for sharing your story on your blog and for stopping by mine.

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