For the first time this year, Juliet and I went canoeing. Years ago, transferring our 70 -pound canoe from atop our VW Eurovan to the shoreline was easy. That’s when I was decades younger and fit. Somehow, the canoe seems to gain weight at the same percentage rate as the increase in the cost of living.
As soon as we arrived, bystanders approached us with, “Need a hand with that?” With much less effort than I had anticipated, the canoe was slipped into the water. After two hours of leisurely paddling, we were faced with the reverse challenge, hauling the canoe from shore to top of vehicle.
In answer to our unspoken prayers, a pair of onlookers leapt into action: “May we help you with that canoe?”
Last winter, I was pulling into a friend’s snow-covered rural driveway. The culvert under it was about four-feet shorter than normal. My pickup dropped into the ditch, drive-wheels spinning in the air.
Out of nowhere, a Mercedes sedan pulled up behind me. “You got a tow rope?” he asked. I hooked us up. His tires spun and screamed. The air went blue, not from anyone’s cursing, but from his tires.
“Hey! Stop, you’ll damage your car!” I began to shout. but just then my truck was freed. As we unshackled the tow rope, he smiled and whispered, “No problem, it’s not my car.”
If you’ve been to Walmart lately, the number of cashiers has been reduced in inverse number to the self check-out stations and the length of customer line-ups. A purchaser of ice cream would be justified in entering it as milk.
However, the overworked cashier still insisted on saying, “Let me pack your bag for you,” even though the extra help was not required. Ever since being discharged from two months in hospital, I’m walking with the assistance of a cane or sometimes a walker. People are even more caring and helpful than usual.
Pumped any gas lately? If you’re as old as our late Queen Elizabeth was, or the same age as any of her children, you can remember hearing this: “Can I check your oil? Your windshield needs a wipe. Tire pressures okay? How about a free road map for your next trip?”
Years ago, my son and I were on a bicycle trip to Vermont. Our first night’s stay was in Montreal. We were setting up our tent on a remote corner of Ile Ste. Hélène.
“Sorry, no camp here. Mon surveillant could see you when he do his rounds. However, over there, under that there weeping willow, would be pas de problème!”
Several days later, on the return leg of our ride, we were pedalling through Olde Montreal. The voice of our angel called out, “Bienvenue! Will you be stay on the island tonight?”