Monday, November 9, 2015

Lessons from the Gas Station:

This weekend I learned a valuable lesson in the most unlikely place.. I was working with Pu’uwai and my shift was about over—it was 6:57pm and I got off at 7:00pm. We were in the car returning back to hs house from taking Pu’uwai on the train ride in the Kaneohe mall. It was a good shift, but I was ready to drive home and cuddle and just be with Riley!

As soon as we pulled into the driveway of his home, his sister said she was going to run inside and get the bankcard to fill up their van with gas. I only had three minutes left and it takes that long to just drive down one way to 7Eleven from their house to fill up.

I was slightly annoyed because I knew she knew the time and that this extra trip would make me go overtime and put me home later. She didn’t say anything else though, but proceeded to get the card inside and then the next minute we headed off to fill up the van.

When we got to 7Eleven, several other cars also wanted to fill up. Half of the pumps were "out-of-order" and so we waited for a few cars to finish up and then pulled up to one of the two functioning pumps at the station. 

It was now pass 7:00pm.  Pu’uwai just sat next to me looking out the window mesmerized by car headlights passing by against the dark sky. The sky was dark--I should be on my way home, but wasn’t. He just rocked back and forth dancing and excited to be outside of his house, completely naive to the time and world around him.

His sister was outside the car now pumping the gas. After a couple minutes, I heard it click indicating the tank was full and then watched as she continued topping if off a few more clicks trying to get an even total: $41.01--She accidently went over one cent. She then grabbed the receipt and got in the car and looked at us in the backseat.  She told me she was going to run inside quick and get food inside the station and would be back soon.

She turned and went inside 7Eleven, I was now more than slightly annoyed,. she knew I was overtime and didn’t say anything. I rolled my eyes to myself and proceeded to watch Pu’uwai. His runny nose had somehow made its way down to his mouth.  I wiped it as he continued to sway to the lights of the highway and sound of the music in his head.  A couple more minutes passed. I looked at his sister from inside the car go back and forth the isles grabbing some food and snacks and then finally she was waiting in the line to ring up.

She paid for the items and walked out the store.  I watched impatiently as she inched forward to the car, obviously on her own time. Before getting to the car she suddenly turned and walked to a homeless man. I hadn’t noticed him this whole time I had been waiting for her impaciently. He was huddled next to the station sitting on his blanket with a jacket over his head. The rain was slightly coming down and he was alone. She gave him all the food she had just carefully selected and bought and returned back to the car empty handed. She didn’t say anything and we proceeded on our way back to their house.

I learned a couple lessons that night and the spirit taught me a little more! If we worry too much about ourselves, we don't have time for others. I was so anxious to get to my own home and husband that I didn't notice the man without a home. I was so annoyed at Pu'uwai's sister taking her own time when in reality she was just serving her grandma by filling up the tank and then getting food for a complete stranger when they really don't have much food themselves. I learned that we must not be too consumed in our own world and time schedules to notice others in need. & we must not be quick to judge and realize that everyone has good in them.  

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