Tuesday, February 15, 2011
This past Sunday Pam and I thought we would take a drive. It was a beautiful day - sunny and warm. The perfect day to put the top down on the Miata and explore the Georgia backroads. So, after three worship services we dashed home, changed clothes, gassed up, and headed out thinking we would make it to Newnan and grab a bite there before heading to parts unknown.
That was the plan anyway.
We got stuck behind someone going slow, r-e-a-l slow. And we couldn't see much, being low to the ground and all. We were stuck for a long time. You know the drill: two lane country highway, few passing zones, and everytime we hit a zone there were cars coming from the other direction.
Finally, we got lucky. I zipped into the left lane, punched it, and then BANG, immediately hit the largest pothole in the state of Georgia. The car limped to the intersection we were approaching. I turned onto the four lane divided highway, pulled over, and got out to inspect the damage.
The front driver's side tire was as flat as they come - a big ugly gash in the sidewall. Oh, you remember we were in the Miata? Yeah, the little cars that don't come with a spare; instead, you get a can of sealant and compressed air. That is all well and good for a puncture, but does nothing for a two inch hole in the sidewall.
Thank goodness for technology. We grabbed the GPS, hit "help" then "where am I?" We were in the middle of nowhere, but it said "Fairburn". Next step, pull out the iPhone, get the Internet, Google "Fairburn Towing". It was a busy day, but they said they could get to us within the hour.
For fifty-five minutes we watched a stream of cars pass by. They stopped at the stoplight and looked at us. Their heads swiveled to look at us as they accelerated through the intersection heading on their way. Dressed in their Sunday-go-to-meeting clothes, heading back from lunch after church, they looked at us. And for nearly an hour, not one person stopped.
Now, this was not some six foot four, three hundred ound, scraggly-bearded guy with a broken down pickup truck with a "Kill 'Em All and Let God Sort 'Em Out" bumper sticker. This was little ol' me, and littler ol' Pam in a MIATA broken down on the side of the road. We were about as unintimidating as you can get.
But no one stopped.
Not even to ask if we needed them to call someone.
Not even the folks dressed in their Sunday finest going home after the lunch following worship.
If a Muslim man from the Mideast stopped it would have made this a sermon illustration down the road. But he didn't. No one did.
I'll remember that the next time I see someone on the side of the road. And I'll stop. Even if only to ask if I can call someone for them.
I hope you will as well.