The Enormity of Kindness

We live in a van and I’m an asshole.

It’s a blessing, in that we can stay out of the cold, that we are mobile, the rent is the price of gas and avoiding the police, but still, it is a van and it is icy outside in Washington State.

So when we had occasion recently to revisit the hometown of my wife post-Thanksgiving and running at exactly $0 entering town with the expectation of  freezing for the opportunity we ran into something truly remarkable.

I’m the kind of guy who will walk into a hotel and ask them if I could do something, anything, trash, bathrooms, you name it, in order for my wife and I to enjoy a night off the four wheels we call lovingly home.

I’ve asked this kind of question at stores for food, at restaurants, gas stations, and now hotels. The response is varied, but I honestly don’t have a problem working in exchange for a bartered commodity.

This time it worked, and for a few hours pulling weeds and emptying trash bins around the site we were graced with a beautifully appointed room, a bloody shower (no blood, but you know how these sayings go), a TV which we typically don’t watch but decided a MASH bonanza was in order, and a BED.

I think the joy of a bed is indescribable under the best of times, but when compared to the wonderful (thank you Arabella) topper that we have in our van, even a full sized BED is orgasmic in it’s perfection.

We slept there for nearly 14 hours straight the first night, waking warm for the first time in months, and then maybe 12 hours the next to the same enjoyable results.

This is kind of an obscure way to go about saying it, but to each and every wonderful oddball out there that actually considers some request from a weirdo like me/us out there….thank you. It was a much needed comfort, respite, and opportunity to try and regain some of the closeness that stressful situations put on hold indefinitely when your chamber pot is in the middle of the transmission column separated by only a few inches of steel.

The warmest of wishes to those of you who have gone without and understand the enormity of life affirming belief that can be realized by simply helping some random stranger with something simple – think gloves, socks, a place to stay for one night, a few dollars in gas, something to eat, hell, a beer under the right circumstances.

You’re the kind of people the make the underworld spin, in all the right and appreciative ways. Thank you.


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