I forced myself to go on my walk today.
Besides the healing leg, I now also have a cold.
However, the sun was shining and the sky was a pure wash of blue.
I figured I'd feel better if I got some "fresh airs"
(as my grandson Jack used to say when he was younger).
There was a brisk wind, but I hadn't gone far before I had to tie off my jacket.
I walked with bare hands, my face lifted to the sun.
This week is mimicking spring, though we'll still have plenty of winter.
About half way down the snow-packed dirt road,
a cleaning person who had been parked at a rental house near mine
came by me and swerved off the road.
I heard the thump as the car hit the snow bank on the passenger side.
Luckily, it didn't go in far enough to get stuck.
The driver, a young man, managed to steer out and continue on the road.
About a quarter mile later, I rounded a bend on a downhill.
A pickup was pulled to the left side of the road.
Beyond it, the car that had just gone into the snow bank
now hung suspended on another bank on the driver's side.
It was only a foot from toppling down a steep embankment.
The pickup driver was telling the young man how to attach a tow rope.
I waited a couple minutes trying to decide if I should pass or turn to go home.
Of course, I now wondered if the young man driving the car was drunk.
Or, was he stoned and unable to steer the car?
He looked like a typical kid here for winter employment:
flannel shirt, red sneakers, knit cap, skinny jeans - young.
On my return trip, the kid was just easing his car back onto the road.
He and the good samaritan in the pickup exchanged a few quiet words.
I heard "thank you" and "stay safe."
As the youth drove away I called out to the man returning to the pickup.
"Is that kid drunk? I asked. "Is he fit to drive?"
The young man who helped shook his head.
"He's not drunk. But, he has a sad story.
Two weeks ago his wife died.
He's driving with a broken heart
and a lot of grief on his mind.
It doesn't help that his tires are bald."
My hand flew to my own heart.
Both these men looked very young to me.
Surely too young to know death and heartache.
But, of course, we often don't know the burdens others must carry.
Just an ordinary day, midweek,
on a snowy back road in Colorado,
under extraordinary circumstances for some,
I witnessed heartbreak and sorrow,
People pass by us like shadows,
sometimes leaving bits and pieces of themselves
teaching us something we need to learn