Sunday, 20 March 2011

What goes around comes around - the ballad of Bryan Anderson

Here is a touching tale sent to me by email. Who knows if it is true?

One day a man saw an old lady, stranded on the side
of the road, but even in the dim light of day, he could
see she needed help. So he pulled up in front of her
Mercedes and got out. His Pontiac was still sputtering
when he approached her. Even with the smile on
his face, she was worried. No one had stopped to help
for the last hour or so. Was he going to hurt her? He
didn't look safe; he looked poor and hungry.
He could see that she was frightened, standing out
there in the cold. He knew how she felt. It was that
chill which only fear can put in you.

He said, 'I'm here to help you, ma'am. Why don't you
wait in the car where it's warm? By the way, my name
is Bryan Anderson.'

Well, all she had was a flat tire, but for an old lady,
that was bad enough. Bryan crawled under the car
looking for a place to put the jack, skinning his knuckles
a time or two. Soon he was able to change the
tire. But he had to get dirty and his hands hurt.
As he was tightening up the lug nuts, she rolled down
the window and began to talk to him. She told him
that she was from St. Louis and was only just passing
through. She couldn't thank him enough for coming
to her aid.

Bryan just smiled as he closed her trunk. The lady
asked how much she owed him. Any amount would
have been all right with her. She already imagined all
the awful things that could have happened had he
not stopped. Bryan never thought twice about being
paid. This was not a job to him. This was helping
someone in need, and God knows there were plenty,
who had given him a hand in the past. He had lived
his whole life that way, and it never occurred to him
to act any other way.

He told her that if she really wanted to pay him back,
the next time she saw someone who needed help, she
could give that person the assistance they needed,
and Bryan added, 'And think of me.'

He waited until she started her car and drove off. It
had been a cold and depressing day, but he felt good
as he headed for home, disappearing into the twilight.
A few miles down the road the lady saw a small cafe.
She went in to grab a bite to eat, and take the chill
off before she made the last leg of her trip home. It
was a dingy looking restaurant. Outside were two old
gas pumps. The whole scene was unfamiliar to her.
The waitress came over and brought a clean towel
to wipe her wet hair. She had a sweet smile, one that
even being on her feet for the whole day couldn't
erase. The lady noticed that the waitress was nearly
eight months pregnant, but she never let the strain
and aches change her attitude. The old lady wondered
how someone who had so little could be so giving to
a stranger. Then she remembered Bryan ..

After the lady finished her meal, she paid with a hundred
dollar bill. The waitress quickly went to get
change for her hundred dollar bill, but the old lady
had slipped right out the door. She was gone by the
time the waitress came back. The waitress wondered
where the lady could be. Then she noticed something
written on the napkin.

There were tears in her eyes when she read what the
lady wrote: 'You don't owe me anything. I have
been there too. Somebody once helped me out, the
way I'm helping you. If you really want to pay me back,
here is what you do: Do not let this chain of love
end with you.'

Under the napkin were four more $100 bills.
Well, there were tables to clear, sugar bowls to fill,
and people to serve, but the waitress made it through
another day. That night when she got home from
work and climbed into bed, she was thinking about
the money and what the lady had written. How could
the lady have known how much she and her husband
needed it? With the baby due next month, it was
going to be hard....

She knew how worried her husband was, and as he lay
sleeping next to her, she gave him a soft kiss and whispered
soft and low, 'Everything's going to be all right.
I love you, Bryan Anderson.'

No comments:

Post a Comment