In amongst all the chaos and confusion in the world at the moment, there is also a great sense of community, kindness and collaboration.
Last night my poor little car pretty much blew up on the way to Powderham, and rather than thinking about the unfortunate consequences of its untimely death, my nerves were soothed by the way people came together to help me sort it out. It still brings a tear to my eyes when I think about it.
I feel such gratitude for the love and care that I received from those known as well as unknown to me.
It was around 6pm on my way to class and all of a sudden I was surrounded by smoke, and it sounded like the engine was running away from itself. Apparently it is actually called a runaway, and I was very lucky that the car didn’t catch fire, and although I wasn’t able to drive it, I still managed to get to the castle on time to take my class.
The spectacle of my car surrounded by a big ball of smoke stopped the road entirely. In shock, I had taken the keys out of the ignition and got myself out the car. I thought it was going to bang, so it felt like the right thing to do. The drivers of the two cars behind me both got out and waved me away from the car, and we all kept a distance. Both were confident and kind, around my age, maybe a little younger, one was from Bridge Motorcyles, that’s all I know. He rang the fire brigade while the other one tried to keep me calm.
Another chap coming the other way, he worked for the council I saw from his sweatshirt, stopped and came over to help as we could push the car off the road. The owners of Millfield Farm B and B came out to see if they could help, and before long I had a tribe of helpers. Then the fire service arrived, one of them an ex landlord of mine, whom I was reassured to see.
I’m looking around and I’m almost redundant as others are checking the car, arranging transport for me, offering reassurances and general all-round kindness, and I am overwhelmed. I’m taking to the chap from the council who has brought a piece of equipment from his van to make some checks (don’t ask me what it was, I was in a daze!).
“I can’t believe how helpful everyone is being”, I tell him.
“That’s what it’s all about”, he answers, “we help each other out”.
I nod, smiling. He is spot on. It is what it’s all about.
I had just earlier been writing about this subject, as I advertised the charity event I am doing on the beach on Earth Day.
More collaboration, communities working as one, people helping each other, as, after all ,we share the same Earth.
“We’re all in this together”, I had written, and as if by magic, I had just gained all the evidence I had needed to believe that I’m not alone in this thinking.
The next day, a Tuesday in the middle of the day, I have my tribe of friends all calling each other to make sure I am OK, it’s like my very own rescue team, and I feel blessed. Truly blessed. The car is dead, but it’s just a car. People and connections, love and kindness, these are the things that matter, and in amongst the chaos and confusion, all I feel is gratitude.
So although I didn’t get the names of everyone that helped that night on the road between Exminster and Kenton, if you do happen to be reading this, thank you. Thank you from the bottom of my heart.