• Old, alone, & going to hospice

    From a425couple@21:1/5 to All on Sun Aug 30 19:53:31 2020
    XPost: soc.support.depression.crisis

    esus Cuevas
    trrrhtYmSesitoeoarporrrdafuayns sfat 1o1:drr2ree2 AMd ·
    Lois Ann
    tMSrhtampcyionsore td21 ·
    I arrived at the address and honked the horn. After waiting a few
    minutes I honked again. Since this was going to be my last ride of my
    shift I thought about just driving away, but instead I put the car in
    park and walked up to the door and knocked.. 'Just a minute', answered a
    frail, elderly voice. I could hear something being dragged across the
    After a long pause, the door opened. A small woman in her 90's stood
    before me. She was wearing a print dress and a pillbox hat with a veil
    pinned on it, like somebody out of a 1940's movie.
    By her side was a small nylon suitcase. The apartment looked as if no
    one had lived in it for years. All the furniture was covered with sheets.
    There were no clocks on the walls, no knickknacks or utensils on the
    counters. In the corner was a cardboard
    box filled with photos and glassware.
    'Would you carry my bag out to the car?' she said. I took the suitcase
    to the cab, then returned to assist the woman.
    She took my arm and we walked slowly toward the curb.
    She kept thanking me for my kindness. 'It's nothing', I told her.. 'I
    just try to treat my passengers the way I would want my mother to be
    'Oh, you're such a good boy, she said. When we got in the cab, she gave
    me an address and then asked, 'Could you drive
    through downtown?'
    'It's not the shortest way,' I answered quickly..
    'Oh, I don't mind,' she said. 'I'm in no hurry. I'm on my way to a hospice.
    I looked in the rear-view mirror. Her eyes were glistening. 'I don't
    have any family left,' she continued in a soft voice..'The doctor says I
    don't have very long.' I quietly reached over and shut off the meter.
    'What route would you like me to take?' I asked.
    For the next two hours, we drove through the city. She showed me the
    building where she had once worked as an elevator operator.
    We drove through the neighborhood where she and her husband had lived
    when they were newlyweds She had me pull up in front of a furniture
    warehouse that had once been a ballroom where she had gone dancing as a
    Sometimes she'd ask me to slow in front of a particular building or
    corner and would sit staring into the darkness, saying nothing.
    As the first hint of sun was creasing the horizon, she suddenly said,
    'I'm tired.Let's go now'.
    We drove in silence to the address she had given me. It was a low
    building, like a small convalescent home, with a driveway that passed
    under a portico.
    Two orderlies came out to the cab as soon as we pulled up. They were
    solicitous and intent, watching her every move.
    They must have been expecting her.
    I opened the trunk and took the small suitcase to the door. The woman
    was already seated in a wheelchair.
    'How much do I owe you?' She asked, reaching into her purse.
    'Nothing,' I said
    'You have to make a living,' she answered.
    'There are other passengers,' I responded.
    Almost without thinking, I bent and gave her a hug.She held onto me
    'You gave an old woman a little moment of joy,' she said. 'Thank you.'
    I squeezed her hand, and then walked into the dim morning light.. Behind
    me, a door shut.It was the sound of the closing of a life..
    I didn't pick up any more passengers that shift. I drove aimlessly lost
    in thought. For the rest of that day,I could hardly talk.What if that
    woman had gotten an angry driver,or one who was impatient to end his
    shift? What if I had refused to take the run, or had honked once, then
    driven away?
    On a quick review, I don't think that I have done anything more
    important in my life.
    We're conditioned to think that our lives revolve around great moments.
    But great moments often catch us unaware-beautifully wrapped in what
    others may consider a small one.

    At the bottom of this great story was a request to forward this - I
    deleted that request because if you have read to this point, you won't
    have to be asked to pass it along you just will...
    Thank you, my friend...
    Life may not be the party we hoped for, but while we are here we might
    as well dance.

    --- SoupGate-Win32 v1.05
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