I like to think I am a pretty Open-Minded individual. However, there are times I fall into the trap of judgment. I don’t mean to… it just sorta happens. When I do, I am often left humbled and ashamed for my thoughts. We are all different. That is what makes us wonderful. How utterly boring it would be if we were all just alike.
Why then is different still scary?
A couple weeks ago I was faced with just that. I was up in the mountains dark and early to meet some girlfriends for a day of hiking and fun. I made sure I arrived extra early so I could see the sun rise from once of my most favorite places…Newfound Gap. I was not disappointed….
As I had driven up, I was keenly aware of a herd of motorcycles making their way up the mountain. The noise instantly annoyed me, and I prayed they would go on, but no… they pulled in right where I was. Three couples pried themselves off their motorized beast and made their way to where I was enjoying my quiet and peaceful morning.
“Wonderful! A gang!”
The happy couples walked towards me and immediately lit up.
“Are you FREAKIN kidding me?!?!?!?!?” Here I am enjoying the sites, and the smells, and they have to ruin it with their smoke. UHHHH!!!! Couldn’t they just leave nature to those of us who really appreciated it?
To get away, from the annoying bikers, I went back to my car to get myself prepared for my hike. As I opened my trunk, I began the process of changing from my flip flops to my boots, and then putting in my contacts. I still had about 20 minutes till my friends arrived, so I thought I would walk around some more, so I closed my trunk so I could finish my exploring……
OH NO! MY KEYS! THEY. ARE. IN. MY. TRUNK!
Panic overtook me….. my keys were inside my trunk. My car was locked. I was in the mountains. I was up a creek without a paddle.
Immediately I went into Damsel In Distress mode….surely someone was willing to help.
No One. 😦
Not one person wanted to get involved. In fact, people could tell what was going on, and they avoided me like the plague. Whatever happened to helping out your fellow man????? There were not offers to call for help, no offers to go down the mountain for help, and certainly no offers to help me attempt to break into my car.
My friends arrived and to me they looked like the cavalry riding in to save the day….but alas…all they could offer was moral support. Some other kind ladies took the time to stop and assist for a few minutes, but then it was time for them to go.
People continued to walk by…ignoring that I had a problem and needed help. Then one of my friends walked over to the bikers…
ARE YOU FREAKING CRAZY??????? I wanted to scream. Sure! Go ahead… they are probably experts at breaking into cars.
Now I know that that is EXTREMLY ugly of me. But at that moment I didn’t care. I was upset, freaking out, and these people had already annoyed me. The LAST thing I wanted was them to get involved in my business.
To my dismay though…they were willing to offer a helping hand.
For the next 35 minutes I was humbled. These 6 people were no longer annoying “BIKERS” but friendly helpful fellow human beings. I learned that they were 3 couples of best friends who get together to ride on the weekends. The evening before they had gotten on their bikes and rode through the mountains, taking in the wild air, and enjoying time with dear friends. The goal was to come to Newfound Gap to see the sunrise before they headed back down. When a poor, ignorant, and foolish redhead needed help….not one hesitated to help.
These were mothers and fathers. Hard working men and women, who when they saw a stranger (a hysterical stranger at that) in need, jumped right in to help. They wanted no payment, no accolades, they were just doing what was right… helping someone in need.
I walked away feeling incredibly encouraged and yet deeply disappointed in myself. Be careful not to judge. It is so easy to do so when we look at the differences we have with someone. There were folks out getting ready to hike, just like me, that walked by and ignored my pleas for help that day. But the one group of people I was afraid to ask turned out to be my biggest blessing. I witnessed true friendship and love between these 3 couples. Their hearts were as big as the bikes they rode on.
Some of us like to hike and enjoy the quiet, and some of us love the roar of motorcycle and the wind flowing through our hair. But at the end of the day we are ALL humans and we need to look out for each other…ALWAYS. These folks understood that and taught me quiet a bit about love, and humanity that day.
Sometimes we are right…but most of the time we need to think again.