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If you want others to be happy, practice compassion.  If you want to be happy, practice compassion.  ~Dalai Lama


Happy Spring, to our 2TheHeart online family! I have been so busy with my children and with my amazing volunteer group, Angels2TheHeart, that I haven't been able to publish 2TheHeart as much as I'd like to! I thank you for your patience and want you to know I am scheduling more time for 2TheHeart. I love our readers and writers and look forward to sharing more time with you. This story really touched my heart and I couldn't wait to share it with you.

 

The Cab Ride by Kent Nerburn

I walked to the door and knocked. “Just a minute”, answered a frail, elderly voice. I could hear something being dragged across the floor. 

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 1940s 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 asked. 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 treated.”

“h, 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. “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 girl.

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 tightly.  

“You gave an old woman a little moment of joy,” she said.

“Thank you,” was my simple reply.  

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.

-Kent Nerburn  http://kentnerburn.com/

Look for more inspiring stories at our web site!  Click any of the links in the menu to the left. Be sure to read our Letter Box to learn how 2TheHeart stories continue to make a difference throughout the world.

Shop or advertise in our 2TheHeart Spring Boutique! www.2TheHeart.com/boutique

The Letter Box: 

 Hello, Ms. Susan,

I read your story 'The Christmas Angels' with teary eyes and a broken heart. My heart was totally touched, shattered, and deeply moved throughout that great article especially when you profusely cried the tears of deepest gratitude; your story taught me how to give to others, how to be grateful for those who give to us everyday, and how to live the true meaning of gratitude. I was also totally relieved when you shared the kindness and infinite love with other people around you in the world.

Many people walk in and out of our life, but only true friends, who have golden hearts, will leave their footprints in our hearts. The strangers left their footprints in your heart and they will never ever be out of your mind. We are created to love and to be loved, we have to be so kind to other people around us, we have to encircle them with infinite love, unlimited care, and an undivided attention. Believe me, it will soon overflow into the world in which we all live, and it will, sooner or later, come back to us. By experiencing a simple good act for people, just like what the strangers had done for you and what you had done for the family less blessed than you are, world could possibly become a better place to live in.

When the door of happiness closes, another door opens for us, but often times we look so long at the closed door and don't see the one which has been opened for us. You were sitting, beside your children, in the dark looking at the closed door when God sent you Hs Angels to show you that there is an open door, and to teach you the true meaning of giving to others.

best regards. Hamza Hassan

Saudi Arabia

 

Dear Mike Segal,

I am a new subscriber to 2Theheart.com and my first story to read was your “A Lesson in Love.” What a beautiful testament to true and unconditional love. I pray that I am able to read more of your stories and spent a wonderful afternoon browsing through the 2theheart.com archives reading more of your writing. You are a hero. Thank you for sharing your life with us.

Sincerely, Gi Guaram, Philippines

 

2TheHeart, I am always moved by Michael Jordan Segal’s stories and wanted to write in and tell him I am praying for continued success in all that he does. He has touched the lives of so many people and he reminds us all that life is a GIFT. We need to remember that every day. Thank you for sharing his sound file story and the text version too! God bless, Geena

 

Dear 2TheHeart, I was so excited to see 2TheHeart in my inbox today! I loved the sound file of Michael Segal’s story! WOW! Is all I can say! I look forward to hearing more from this great man. I love 2TheHeart !!!!  Michael T.

 

    Making a difference, one story at a time!