One pleasant afternoon last week, starving for tasty Pho, I went out to eat. Everything was just perfect, above and beyond what I could have expected. The setting sun shone on me as I, finally, was walking back to my new silver car, feeling absolutely full up.
It was then that the story started.
There was a strange Vietnamese man in the Sunoco uniform knocking on my car window as soon as I had finished applying the sunscreen. As far as I remember, he was tall and slim. His short hair didn’t suit his tanned, wrinkled face. Especially, he looked like a gambling folk.
Politely, he asked me if I could drive him to the bus station nearby. He explained that his car had broken down and continued, “One of my friends has agreed to give me a lift, but failed to turn up.” Also, he introduced his name and his job.
Without hesitation, I let him get in my car.
On the way there, he even showed me his passport and gave me his phone number, as if he had been honest. Before he left, I lent him $25.00 because he needed some money to buy one or two bus tickets. He promised to pay me back the following day.
I guessed he would consider me as a fool.
To be honest, in spite of giving this person a hand, I didn’t trust him at all. I never once called him, nor expected to get my money back. I was just afraid that I could be wrong. What if he were someone whose car broke down and whose friends were not able to help?
When I was in seventh grade, now and then, my mother couldn’t drive me to school, so I had to ride the bus instead. One time, I realized that I had left my purse at home. For fear that I could be late, I went to a restaurant and asked for three thousand VND. At that time, this tiny amount was only enough to buy me a bus ticket or a loaf a bread.
Of course, no one was generous.
I did nothing but walk back to the bus stop. An old man who was riding a motorcycle stopped and asked me if I wanted to have a ride. He was like a taxi driver in the U.S..
It was then that I burst into tears.
He, hence, was a wreck. The more he asked me why, the louder I sobbed. I tried to tell him that I were tardy for school, that I needed a ride, and that I were flat broke. Understanding what was going on, he smiled and hurried me into getting on his motorcycle. Unquestionably, my surprise was visible. I emphasized that I had not a cent on me once again, but he comforted me, saying that it was fine.
Thanks to him, I reached there in the nick of time.
I met him a few times more, while I was waiting for my bus. No matter how I attempted to persuade, he always persisted in refusing my money.
Needless to say, since then, I have COMPLETELY changed.