This is a STORY that I experienced over 60 years ago that actually influenced my personality permanently. I was driving on the Haudenosaunee reservation on my way to spend the weekend with the Chief and his family. It was winter and snowing pretty heavy. On the road going up hill my car slid of the road into a ditch. I could not move the car. So I got out and started to walk up the hill toward the house. Coming down the hill were three Native Americans that I did not know. They asked me what happened, I related the story and one of them asked me for the keys to my car. He said they would get the car back on the road and take it to a house at the bottom of the hill where one of them lived. Not knowing them I was hesitant. He said not to worry, the car will be there. I continued up the hill to the Chief’s house and spent several days there until the storm cleared and the roads were plowed. I walked to the house that the fellow pointed out, saw my car, was relieved. He came to the door and asked how was my stay. I told him it was difficult, the water pipes froze so we had no water. The young man yelled into the house and asked his wife to “get a fresh towel out and get the shower ready for this stranger.” I said “you do not know me, why are you doing this?” HE SAID, “ THAT’S WHAT I WOULD WANT IF I WERE YOU AFTER SEVERAL DAYS WITHOUT WATER.”
HERE THE LESSON IS OBVIOUS; EMPATHY, COMPASSION, SHARING, VULNERABILITY AND LOVE. ONE OF MY FIRST, OF MANY, LESSONS ON THE RESERVATION. VERY IMPACTFUL. EVERYONE THERE IS JUST LIKE THAT INDIVIDUAL.
TAKE CARE, STAY WELL, STAY HEALTHY.