A decision I made that saddens me

I have no idea why this thought came into my head today. When I’m riding the exercise bike at the YMCA lots of random thoughts pop into my head. And some of those thoughts just marble around in my head until I jot something down about them. And that is the case here.

And this thought involves a regret that I had, perhaps not the greatest regret, but something that jumped into my consciousness periodically for the last several years.

About 25 years ago, I pulled into a deli to get a cup of coffee. After getting the coffee, I got into my car and drove to work. Later in the day, as I was getting ready to drive home, I noticed the car had been seriously damaged. I had no idea where the mishap had occurred, and I had no hope of getting reimbursed for my damages.

About a month later, I was talking to a high school student, and he told me that he knew what happened to my car. He Identified the female high school student who had hit my vehicle and then quickly drove away.

I was able to get the girls phone number and called her.  I drove to her residence, a rundown trailer park, where she lived with her disabled father.  It was at that point, entering her trailer, that I could have turned around, drove away, and paid for the car damages myself. But I did not do that. I had gotten an estimate of $400 for the repairs, and that is what I requested. She asked if she could pay it over time, and I said that would be fine.

And she did eventually pay the bill.

But why didn’t I let her off the hook?  I was easily able to pay the bill myself.  And they were obviously people who were financially challenged.  At the time, I never considered giving those poor folks a break.  It wasn’t till much later that I thought about the appropriateness of taking them off the hook.

If I saw her today, if I were to recognize her, I would give her the four hundred dollars back.  But I am sure she has moved on, with, in all likelihood, a family of her own. Based on her Dad’s condition at the time, he probably is no longer alive.

But it is important that I make good in some way.

I could drive into the same trailer park,
identify someone who is needy, and give them some money.

No shortage of things to do with a few bucks.

I will work something out.  But if I am ever in a similar situation, I will handle things much differently.


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