Offering More Love, Less Fear
--by DoNothing, posted Feb 16, 2010
I'm sort of new to this small acts of kindness game, so I'm not sure how people feel about picking up hitchhikers. I've always felt that as long as you don't put your self in a completely unsafe position, it is an OK thing to do. But I'd never done it before until this week.
It was about 9pm and I was walking in my school's campus from my office to my car. On the way, I ran into an fellow who was obviously lost. He asked me for directions, saying he needed to get to East Palo Alto. But the problem was he was walking in the complete opposite direction!
I pointed him in the correct direction, but warned him it was a long ways off. He didn't speak English very well, and generally seemed disoriented. I quickly felt like helping him. Though he was a big guy, the vibe I got from him was that he was harmless.
I sent him on his way, and I walked away towards my car. Just as he was going out of earshot, something in me clicked, and I called out to him, "Do you know what street you need to get to?" He replied with some names I hadn't heard of, but I thought that I could at least give him a ride into East Palo Alto. It was late and getting cold, and I felt sorry for him for having to walk all that way.
I offered him a ride. He gratefully accepted, and sensing that this may be uncomfortable to me, he offered to show me his ID. I declined, but held out my hand and introduced myself. He said his name was Mario.
Mario followed me to my car, literally, walking behind me all the way. When I unlocked the passenger door for him, he didn't get in until I assured him it was fine. As we sat in the car together, I suddenly got nervous. "If this guy wanted, he could hurt me and take my car", I thought. I contemplated calling my brother as a safety precaution, but then I felt determined to not feel scared. After all, this is what humans do; they help each other out.
Mario and I got into some conversation. He told me about his family in Mexico, how he works but doesn't ever earn enough, how he used to live near Fresno and work on the farms but now earns more in the Bay Area. It was good talking to him, though I couldn't shake the nervousness completely. I kept asking him questions that would give me clues as to whether he was being truthful.
When we got into East Palo Alto, I pulled into a gas station and told him it was as far as I could take him. He quickly got out and thanked me several times, saying he could find his way home from there.
Thinking back on it, I am glad I was able to empathize with Mario and give him a ride. Although it was risky, I think such things should be done without fear, or not at all. I wouldn't say I'd ever pick up a hitchhiker again, but I know that if I did, I would make sure I could offer more love and less fear.
You are wonderful!
Courage is doing the right thing in spite of fear.
Love over fear. You are already another example of a citizen of the world!
Thanks for being the change!
God bless you.
When i was a student myself, i came home by hitch-hiking every weekend.
Now long after my studies, i do pick up hitch-hikers, they mostly are students or some old people who live in some remote areas where the public bus may go only once a week.
My husband never picks up hitch-hikers and he can't understand why i do it.
But i may very well understand the people who have no choice and are standing on the road for help.
I also remember one time i was in the palo alto area and a stranger helped me to get to another town ( a name i don't remember, i think it was san francisco), we both met at a train station, both missed the train, and then he went into a town with his car.
I agree many would say i was stupid, but i agree that some people carry around themselves some vibe - you feel it and know if you can or can not trust them.
Finally, just be careful and try to feel those vibes.
God bless you all