It was a great morning for a bike ride except for the wind. I hadn’t been able to talk myself into my morning workout with Stephanie from The Firm. So I justified it with a promise to ride my bike to Walmart. My car had been in the shop since the 29th, almost three weeks, and Albuquerque is not a public transportation town. Grocery shopping isn’t fun on the bus anyway so I’d relied on the kindness of family and relied on the openings in their schedules to borrow cars from time to time.
Today I needed to get out and had a mission to find a body pillow cover to slip the outdoor love seat cushion into to prevent my Min Pin, Rosie, from pulling the stuffing out and scattering it all over the yard. So I decided a bike ride would be a good solution to both issues.
The wind was a little more than I had expected but I reassured myself with the notion that it would be a tailwind on the way back. Besides it’s only about 3 miles, hardly a big challenge. The weather had been exceptionally cool for mid July, it felt a little like fall at 70 degrees. When I arrived I locked the bike up to the rack by the employee outdoor break tent and went in. I planned to spend an hour finding the pillow cover and just entertaining myself. By the time I was ready to check out I had found a mobile phone arm band, a delightful little succulent plant named Key Lime Pie, the pillow cover, some slip resistant hangers and a replacement humming bird feeder. Pleased with my haul, I headed for the checkout and then on to the bike rack. I got the keys to the lock out of my pocket and stared at the bike. Something wasn’t right and it took a minute for it to register that my seat was missing. Then I heard someone calling from across the parking lot. “Ma’am, Ma’am” the voice called, I couldn’t see who it was coming from but stood there and waited for someone to approach me.
A woman in a small silver car pulled up and said that a couple of men wearing large camping type back packs had taken the seat and that she had told them not to but they walked off with it to the North toward Central. I thanked her and then a man in his late 30’s with a mustache and dark hair approached talking on a cell phone. When he kept talking I wasn’t sure he intended to speak to me so I went over to the bike trying to think of what to do. When he finished his phone call the corroborated what the woman had told me and said he had called the police but they said they couldn’t do anything. I thanked him and decided to cal my daughter but after I told what had happened I realize that my bike wouldn’t fit in her car so I told he I would call Eddie, her younger brother, since he had a truck. Just as I hung up I remembered what the other man had said, if I called the police they might be more inclined to do something. Just as I started to dial the woman in the small silver car pulled up again and called to me. “I’ve got your seat, I’ve got your seat,” she shouted excitedly. As I walked to the open car window she held it up and I was amazed to see that indeed it was my bike seat! “That’s wonderful, You’re an angel!” I exclaimed. She told me she had driven in the direction the men had gone and when she spotted them she pulled up and told them to give her the seat or she would call the police, after a brief hesitation they handed it to her. I was stunned that someone would be so kind and courageous and thanked her again and smiled at her small daughter in the back seat. “Your mom is an angel!” I told her and she waved and drove away.
On the ride home, with the wind at my back, I reflected on this blessing and was thankful for this testament to the good in the world. We just need to pay attention and remember to pay it forward. Who knew angels drove silver economy cars!