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Uriah J. Fields

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By Uriah J. Fields
Tuesday, February 17, 2015

Rated "G" by the Author.

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What is a person's greatest possession? It has to be kindness.
There are many ways and opportunities to express kindness.
Few things a person can do that bring joy equal to that
which comes from expressing kindness.

I had walked about two miles on my usual three and one-third miles early morning walk which  I do five or six days a week when I approached a car with flashing lights and a woman standing to the rear of it. I asked her what was wrong? She told me that she had a flat tire. It  was a cold morning, below freezing.

The car had stopped a few yards before the intersecting street to the rigtr of it. I said to the woman," We need to get this car out of the street to  the side on the intersecting street." She move it to the side street.

Then I asked her if she had a spare tire? She said she did and open the tunk of her car which was filled with newspapers, clothing and junk. I cannot remember having seen the trunk of a car with as much junk as was in this car. We took the spare tire and the jack out of the trunk, but there was no handle for the jack. After taking all the junk out of the car we still did not find a handle for the jack. She reasoned that the mechanic who last worked on her car did not put the handle to the jack back in her trunk. She used her cell phone and called someone, I assumed someone at the place where she worked, and said that she had a flat tire and would be late for work. Then she called another person who apparently told her, from what I heard her say, to call  for a tow truck.

I told the woman that I'm going to walk back home, about a mile a way and if she was still there when I returned I would use my jack to help her change the tire on her car. When I returned after going home I noticed that she had put all that trash-junk-stuff back in the trunk of the car but left the spare tire and her handleless jack on the ground.

I was just beginning to use my jack to jack up her car when the driver of the tow truck arrived. I ceased doing what I was doing. The woman asked the driver of the tow truck "How much will it cost?" The tow truck driver said $40.00. Noticing the woman's hesitation the tow truck driver said, "I'll charge you $20.00. I believe he told her it would cost $20.00 because he saw me attempting to jack up her car.

The tow truck driver got the jack from his car, but what a coincidene, like the woman, he had no handle for his jack. He used the handle of  my jack to jack up her car. Had I not brought my jack, the tow truck driver would  have not been able to jack up the woman's car until he went back to his place of  business or called someone to bring him another jack or handle for his jack.

After the driver of the tow truck changed the tire, she gave him $20.00 and he was gone, perhaps for the next job.

The woman thanked me for having helped. When I gave her $5.00 I saw tears come from her eyes. She thank me again and again. Although she told me her name I do not remmber it. Before driving away I gave her a track that contains my photo and a message titled, "Love Joy and Peace" I had written which sometimes I share with people.

What I did on that cold winter morning was an act of kindness. The woman I helped felt that it was. As I reflect on this experience, I cannot but help to feel that there are a lot of people who would have done the same thing I did without having any expectation of receiving compensation or reciprocity. Like me, they would have the joy that comes with knnowig that they did the right thing in rendering "an act of kindness."

Copyright 2015 by Uriah J. Fields

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Reviewed by Ronald Hull 2/18/2015
You really went the extra mile for her. It's too bad she didn't trust you to help her with the tire. If she had, you would've helped her change the tire for nothing, she would've been grateful, and both of you would have saved $20.

Soon after I was paralyzed at 20, I found that I could drive certain unmodified cars with my paralyzed hands. Since that time, I've driven over 500,000 miles, mostly alone. I've had many flat tires and blowouts over those years and never was stranded because of it. There was always someone that would appear very soon and help me out. I generally had a few dollars in my pocket and would pay people who helped me, but most refused my money. The last incident like that was last year when I cut a tire badly on a sharp curb trying to avoid hitting a squirrel. The young student driving behind me, spent 20 minutes or so of his time changing my tire.

Through all those 50 years since, strangers have pumped my gasoline, never asking for any money. Many times, I could see that they were very happy to have shown to me a simple act of kindness. Whenever I could, I've always helped people without ever asking for any compensation. It's my way of giving back for all those that have given to me their time and assistance.


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Uriah J. Fields

THE FIELDS SCHOOL: An African American School Without Failures in Alabama

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Grandpa Benjamin

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Recovering Your Lost Self From Adversity, An Anthology Edited by Art M by Maryanne Raphael

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