Still trying to figure out the rules about what to write in travel blogs. What’s OK and what isn’t? Is it OK to write about situations that might get someone that helped you in trouble?
Suppose that you have been biking in Florida forever and still haven’t gotten out? Suppose that you are getting so close that you can smell the Georgia air? And then you see a sign that said that a bridge is closed. And that you will have to bike on Rt 95 and go 6 miles out of your way. (We have never really considered biking on Rt 95, ever.) Wouldn’t you at least check out the bridge if it was two miles away to see if maybe, just maybe, a bike could get through? It wouldn’t be the first time on the trip that we’ve gone through a closed road.
So if you get to the bridge and see that a tent is up to seal it, but a young man is coming out of the work area – would you go to talk to him? Or would you and your wife decide that she should probably go talk to him? Maybe you watch as another young man emerges from the work area and a conversation goes on for 5-10 minutes. Maybe then your wife returns to say that they are going to let us through. She explains that there was this one moment when the man named Jesse called his boss to explain the situation, and he asked if it would it be OK if they opened the bridge to let two girls on their bikes through. (We had our hoods up and I was standing far back; Shelagh waited til the end of the conversation to correct him.)
Well, they really do it. Joe and Jesse help lift our bikes over barrier curbs, they unseal the tent, first at one end, then the next. And finally they use their forklift to raise the concrete barrier and let us out on the Georgia side. When we offer them a little something to have a drink on us later, they refuse, saying they are just so glad to have been able to help us, and just to please pass it on.
Of course, thanks to a trick of fate, Shelagh’s phone broke later that day, and she lost all her photos from the trip, including any that might prove this story to be true. So Jesse and Joe are safe – there is no proof that they ever helped us.
Shelagh tells me that they really did ask their boss for permission and won’t get in trouble. Still, I have to tell you, but for the kindness of strangers, our day would have been considerably different. Thank you, Jesse and Joe, you made our day.
Did I mention that it was pouring that whole time?