--^---@Stories From Both Sides--^---@

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Where to begin. I have been on both sides of the random acts of kindness. I have given and I have received.

This e-mail marks a point in my financial recovery, after being slowly drained down to what appeared to be utter devastation. A marriage that was both good and bad at the same time, had left me in dire straits. Counseling was no longer helping. Money was so tight I couldn't afford anything to go wrong, it did. My car over heated and cracked the head. That was a nightmare in itself. My marriage had turned physically and verbally violent, and there was no relief from it even with the new found fact that had no way to work on my own or to get the things we need. I left the relationship, literally walking out, leaving my daughter behind, with no preplanned place to stay or way to get there. I relied on co-workers to get me to work. One of those co-workers, help me with a place to stay.

On the Air Force base where I work as a civilian there is a camp ground. My co-worker/friend of many years, gave me his travel trailer to use, paid the first week of space rent, and picked me up each day to take me to work for about a month!!!!!!!!!!!

With no car, its not too unnoticeable. Those who are close to me know that I worried each day about my daughter and how I was going to provide for her, and get her around. Another friend/co-worker stepped up with vehicle. He gave me a van!!!!!! It was a second vehicle that he said has had more than one life. He's knows I would repay if I could, yet he wants me to continue the legacy. When I get to where I can, I will give this vehicle to someone else in the best possible shape it can be.

My two co-workers know I appreciate what they did over 15 months ago. Though I have yet to pay them, I help when I can. They always say its isn't necessary and they were glad to help out.

Do you have a way of recognizing them?

On Oct the 14th, 2006, I heard a knock on my door. There stood an older man asking for drinking water. He was dirty and as he put it, tired of walking. He had walked from Barstow to my place over night. A distance of 42 miles!!!!!!! He had slept near a dumpster the night before and claimed he didn't hitch a ride because he smelled so bad, from the dumpster. I didn't ask why. I asked him where he was headed. He said to Mojave (17 miles) to catch a bus to Bakersfield where his family was. I offered a second glass of water, he refused. I told him to get in the van. I would take him to Mojave. Arriving in Mojave to check on a bus for him we realized that it was Columbus day. No one we queried knew if the bus ran on holidays. I was not going to put him out in uncertainty. Bakersfield is still 60 miles away. I announced we are going to Bakersfield. I dropped him off with family and returned home.

Oct 14 was not done yet! I went to Barstow that evening just to be out that day. I hadn't been out to do anything in a long time. Arriving there I remembered a gas station that sold novelty license plates. I like to read those and sometimes I'll buy one. I noticed a woman talking on her cellphone as I pulled into the Shell station parking lot. Getting out I heard her say something about being stuck and that she had called a tow truck, and it had not arrived yet and she frantically needed to get home. From appearances she looked like she could afford it. Once inside the focus came to the woman and how absolutely distraught she was. She had came inside to apologize to the attendants and explained she really was really very upset and hoped she hadn't unnerved them. I walked outside and paused just outside the door looking at a vehicle and a trailer at a gas pump. She walked out and stood next to me. I asked what the problem was. She had pulled too closely to the gas pump and had gotten the trailer stuck on the gas pump protective post. Using a pry bar and moving her vehicle back and forth we freed the trailer!!!!!. She was very elated to finally be going home after being stuck and uncertain.

I returned home. I couldn't recall a more wonderful day.



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