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Friday, July 21, 2017

What's In Your Wallet?

AN EDITED VERSION OF THIS PIECE IS SCHEDULED TO APPEAR IN THE METROPOLITAN DIARY SECTION OF THE NEW YORK TIMES

In 1970, I received a call from a friend that she was at the New York City car impound. Her car had been towed and she didn't have the money needed to retrieve it.

When I arrived, I stood on line with my friend, waiting our turn to pay and leave, with vehicle recovered. Standing in front of me was a young mom with her child. She was clearly upset and I soon learned that she too was short on cash. When I asked, I was told that $10 was all that stood between her and reuniting with her car.

I handed her the amount of the shortfall, she took my name and address, thanked me profusely and promised to return the borrowed funds at once.

I was 18 at the time, living at home and related that story to my folks at dinner that night. My mom praised me for my good deed and my faith in my fellow man (woman) but suggested I was naive if I thought that I would ever be repaid.

The next week I received a beautiful thank you note and a $10 bill. That money has remained in my wallet for 47 years.

12 comments:

Anonymous said...

Beautiful. Just like you.

Bruce Egert said...

Brought you good luck; now, donate it to a worthy cause in her name and in the name of all whom you helped knowingly and unknowingly.

Anonymous said...

Great story. I never knew it.

GK

Anonymous said...

made me cry lois

Anonymous said...

just sooooooo you.
brought up my mood this morning


MA

Anonymous said...

Heart warmer! Thanks for the up lifting tale.- K

Pam said...

So nice.. I had a similar story with a different ending.. I was on 175th Street and Broadway in my car when a young well dressed panicked young man bangs on my window and tells me some story ( forgot what) but he is in such distress I gave him the 10 dollars he asked for. I gave him my business card that he also asked me for to send the money back. I come home after work and relate my story to a friend that night who says... jeez.. I gave money to the same kid today... Neither of us good paid back... But I would still do it today..

Alexandra Levine said...

I've always loved this story. But surely one of countless good deeds you have done in your life. You're one of the good ones, dad. Love you.

Anonymous said...

Your piece today was great! Never knew. I think you should hold onto the $10 … someone needy is bound to cross your path again, and you can pass it along and do another good deed (on top of the thousands you’ve already done).

mv

Anonymous said...

A much needed uplifting story. Thx!

M

Cathy Farber said...

Great blog title. Kind and motivating story. Thanks for sharing, Bob.

Anonymous said...

Loved this story!!!



Helen