Skip to main content

Year Two, Day 47: Two Catholics, A One-Eyed Homeless Man, and a Hacksaw...

Sounds like the beginning of a joke, right?


I assure you it is not.  But before I tell you the story, let me toot my own horn a bit.


I rode 5.5 miles on my bike today!

I am woman, hear me roar!

It was  actually quite pleasant.

Well, aside from the incident after church this morning.  Involving my bike, two Catholics, a homeless man with a patch over his eye, a hacksaw and me.

Now that it is over and done with, it is quite amusing.

Although my feet are not so amused.

But I digress.

You probably want to hear the story, right?

 O.K.

Here goes:

So there I was this morning, outside the church. Preparing to lock up my bike  and start my day with 8:00 a.m. Mass as I usually do on Saturdays.  But today, I had ridden my bike instead of the bus. I was feeling quite proud!


I scouted out a good place to lock up my bike. I was a bit worried about my little white basket attached to the front.  I glanced nervously towards the door of the church.  There was a homeless person tightly rolled up in a blanket by the door. Looked like a human cocoon.

I pulled out my combination lock-cable.  It barely fit through the basket and around the post in front of the church. And when I went to lock it, it would not!  I was feeing quite anxious.  I jammed it together and gave the numbers a whirl and went into church.

The doors to the church were open.  I had a feeling that I had not locked my bike properly. Everytime I heard a noise, I assumed someone had stolen my bike and sweet white  basket.  Maybe the homeless man. I scolded myself for being so anxious and judgmental. I prayed and became immersed in the service.

After Mass, I walked out, heart thudding. I looked outside and there was my ride. All safe and sound! I felt silly.  I went to unlock it. The homeless man was still sleeping.  I put in my combination. And nothing! It would not unlock!  I tried several times.  I had a horrible feeling. When I forced it earlier, I think I messed it up.  Maybe deprogrammed the code.

I must have looked panic stricken.  An older couple in their car, came over and asked if I was ok. I explained to them what happened.  They tried to help to no avail. They suggested I go in and ask "Bob" (not his real name). Apparently Bob was quite the handyman!

I ran in and found Bob. I told him what happened and asked if he had any bolt cutters with him. He said no, but he would come out and look at it. We all looked at it, tried the combination several times. No luck.  It was one of those really strong cables with a combination lock built in. And it was not going anywhere. My heart was thudding sickly.

I was supposed to meet my mom for breakfast in 30 minutes. She would be worried.  What was I going to do?

Where would I get bolt cutters? I certainly could not afford them at the store. Then I saw a Jiffy Lube up the street. I told my Catholic friends that I was going to go ask the folks at Jiffy Lube if they had any bolt cutters. I ran up the block and explained my situation. I expected them to be suspicious or turn me away.  I explained what had happened. I also threw in there that I was a Jiffy Lube customer. Well, I had been in the past! They were very kind. One of the young men went downstairs to see what kind of tools they had. The other attendant, a young lady kindly talked with me and said they would help, not to worry.

The young man emerged shortly after.

"No bolt cutters", he said. "But we have a hacksaw!"

"I will give it a try!" I exclaimed, thanking them and running back to church.

Soon, we had Bob with the hacksaw, and the an older woman and myself assisting, holding the cable taut. It was slow going. A couple times I worried Bob would lose a finger! He did not seemed concerned, but he was working up a sweat.

Then suddenly I  noticed someone approach out of the corner of my eye.

It was the homeless man. He peered at us curiously with one eye. He had a patch over the other.  His fingernails were long and yellow.

"That hacksaw is awful dull", he remarked. "Might take you all day."

But then he and Bob started to work together. Sawing, twisting the cable, trying different angles. Discussing their methods.

They were both sweating by now.  Cars were driving by slowly, peering at us, curiously.

"People are probably wondering what the Catholics are up to", I told the lady.

We giggled.

Just then we heard a snap.  We jumped.  Bob and homeless man were smiling. Holding up two ends of the cable.

"There ya go!" said Bob.

I hugged them all and thanked them.

Then I hopped on my bike and headed to breakfast with my mom. And in search of a new bike lock.  Maybe I should pack a hacksaw next time just in case?

A very intense experience this was! But then again, if this had not happened I would not have this story to tell.

I am painfully aware of the lesson I learned. Yet again.

"Thank you, God", I whispered.  I wiped a tear from my eye.

There are still so many kind people in this world. And so many of them are hidden beneath the veil of my own prejudice.


"Judge not, that ye be not judged.
"For with what judgment ye judge, ye shall be judged: and with what measure ye mete, it shall be measured to you again."

Matthew 7:1-

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

Year Three, Day 134: The Charmed Life of a Commuting Grandma

I just discovered that the Starbucks at Cascades Station stays open until 10:00 p.m. every night.

Just when I was wanting to pinch myself to make sure I wasn't dreaming. Being a commuting grandma really is not that difficult. Actually, my life pretty much rocks right now!

Today has been a very good day. And I had maybe 3 hours of solid sleep last night. The Burrito has decided she likes to sleep cuddled in the arms of her Great Grandma Blanche or Grandma Zita during the day. Or snuggled safe in her infant seat while her mom, grandma and great grandma go out to lunch, do laundry and go shopping.

I warned my daughter that the
Baby Burrito needed some awake time yesterday. Or else we would pay for it in the evening. But getting so much done with a snoozing baby in tow was so freeing. Especially since Baby Burrito's dad is elk hunting all weekend.

We finally roused her for a bath, diaper change and piano lesson early afternoon.

Baby Burrito had a fantastic first piano lesson. At…

Year Two, Day 288: I Found a Place!

This is truly amazing.

God is so good.

All the time!

I posted on Facebook my housing plight yesterday afternoon. And so many of my wonderful friends had helpful suggestions. Several offers for roommates came in.  But most of them so far from my work.

Then, I was heading home after teaching and just felt the need to sit and think.  Of course sitting and thinking go so much better with a cheeseburger on a rice cake, and what do you know...there I was getting off the bus in from of a McDonald's!

So I ordered a quarter pounder with cheese, ditched the bun and plopped it down between two rice cakes (I always carry emergency rice cakes in my bags these days).

I opened up Facebook and found a message from the pastor at my church job. She and her family have a room in their basement that they have been wanting to rent. But they were hesitant to put up an ad. They preferred knowing the person.

And here I am!  This is a blessing in so many ways! I will help them by paying rent and being a p…

Year Three, Day 156: Thank God for COPD and 120 Days of Daily Hooping

10:00 a.m.

Today has been a very good day so far.

I am here at my daughter and son-in-law's church.


I have Baby Gracie duty. It is a pleasure! I had not seen her in four days. Such a difference those days made! I arrived at their trailer before church. I went straight to her crib and said,"Hi Gracie, your grandma is here!"

I scooped her up and noticed her looking intently up at my face. Like she was studying me. I continued talking to her and her face lit up with recognition!

My heart leapt for joy!

I danced with her around the living room, softly singing our theme song ("The Bunny Hop"). When I got to the "hop, hop, hop" part she would grin.




Earlier, I took the Max to Cascades Station. Had a cup of Earl Grey tea and a gluten free breakfast sandwich at Starbucks. It was such a beautiful morning. Clear, crisp and chilly. Sun shining brightly.

I love this time of year!  I did cough quite a bit last night. The Prednisone has taken the edge off, but does …