I had just parked my car at the beach in White Rock, BC and was going through my usual checklist before starting my daily power walk on the Promenade. It was a beautiful day and I was wearing a jacket, shorts and a t-shirt. But as I got out of the car, I realized that it would be too hot wearing the jacket, so I took it off and threw it in the back seat. I was just about to leave when I suddenly noticed that I didn’t have any change for the parking meter. So I got back in the car and starting looking in the console and glove compartment for quarters, loonies or toonies. I finally found a toonie ($2.00). Hooray I happily screamed to myself as I quickly exited the car!!!
It was after I locked the car door that I noticed that I had left the car keys on top of the console – inside the locked car. Also in the car was my cell phone (’cause I don’t call people when I’m walking or driving) so I wouldn’t be able to call anyone for help. However, I did have a couple of $20 bills in my pocket, so I wasn’t totally stranded… but that didn’t stop the panic that was slowly creeping up my spine.
‘What are you going to do now Mr. Forgetful?’, I thought.
I decided to put the $2 coin into the parking meter and then start my 3 mile walk – hoping that I’d figure something out.
I hadn’t walked too far before noticing a yellow Surdell Taxi pulling into another parking lot. I knew that most taxis have booster cables and that they are much less expensive than calling for a tow truck but do they have tools for opening locked doors? I approached the driver and noticed that he had another person with him, who was in the front seat.
The driver had just shut off the engine when I asked “Excuse me, but I have locked my car keys in the car and was wondering if you have any tools to assist me?”
Without hesitating, the driver got out of the cab and asked me where I was parked.
I told him that it was a few blocks away and again asked if he had any tools that would work.
“No” he replied, “but a tow truck will charge you $25 to come here to open your vehicle.” And once again he asked “Where are you parked?”
“Oh, it’s okay” I answered, “I’ll give them a call.”
And once again he asked “Where are you parked?”
I pointed in the direction of the other lot and he began walking. “Come, let’s see if we can get your car door opened” he calmly stated.
“No, it’s not necessary” I urged. But this man was determined to help me.
As we walked to the car, I mentioned that it was another beautiful day in paradise. I was searching my brain for small talk but that was all I could come up with.
“I’m from Fiji” he replied.
“It must be very nice there too” I clumsily answered.
When we got to the car, I proudly pointed out that I had left each of the front windows down about a half an inch – as though that simple act might make me appear brilliant. But it didn’t – I still felt very stupid and awkward.
“Let me see if we can find a rod or stick to put through the window to unlock the handle” he calmly stated.
As we began looking around for something suitable, we noticed a large white pickup truck pull into the parking lot. He quickly went over to help guide the truck driver’s large truck into the tiny parking space. The driver got out of the truck and he looked like a giant football player – the kind you call Sir. But that didn’t deter or intimidate my good Samaritan.
“Do you have a rod or something that we could use to help this man open his car door?” he asked politely.
The pickup driver looked at him and then at me and then quietly opened a compartment on the side of his truck and pulled out a long carpenter square.
“No, that won’t fit” I stated – hoping that he would think that I was some kind of genius. But he didn’t – he just looked at me and shook his head – as though I was stupid.
I was just about to plead my usual “I’m a Senior, and my memory isn’t…” but this guy was huge and I didn’t want to get on the bad side of him. I quickly ran over to my car and got there just as the good Samaritan opened my door. He looked at me and smiled.
“Oh thank you!” I shouted happily, and started dancing around the parking lot. I stopped dancing when the huge and muscular truck driver/football player/professional wrestler came over to retrieve his carpenter square. I then handed the square back to him and resumed my happy dance back to the good Samaritan.
“Please, let me give you $20 – you’ve been so kind and wonderful” I stated.
But the good Samaritan just smiled at me and said if I offered it to him again it would ruin our friendship – he suggested that I give the $20 to someone homeless or in need.
I offered my hand in thanks and friendship but he reached out both of his arms to hug me. After we hugged, he suggested we take a ‘selfie’ together. He took out his cell phone and took a picture of us together. I quickly got a business card to give him and asked him to email me a copy of the picture. I told him that I was going to write a blog about his kindness and wanted the picture to include with this story.
“My name is Daniel but my friends and family call me Danny” I explained.
“My name is Deeno” he replied. I’m not sure if that his how he spells his name or not because I never got an email from him yesterday or when I checked my email again this morning before writing this blog. I have another friend whose name is Deepak, so I am hoping that I’ve spelled Deeno’s name correctly. But even though I only knew him briefly, he is now a BFF (Best Friend Forever). If Deeno ever sends me that picture, I will be posting it on this page.
This morning I am driving to an area of Surrey where I know there are homeless people and I am going to give the first person I see $20 and explain to them why I am giving it to them.
I am also going to call Surdell Taxi and tell them about my experience with their driver Deeno, the good Samaritan who drives cab # SK49.
Thank you Deeno.
UPDATE on April 26, 2015: I got an email from my new friend/her0 and he sent the selfie that he took of us on that special day. And the correct spelling of his name is Dinesh. Thanks Dino!