On my way into work this morning, I encountered a motorcyclist on the shoulder of the freeway. My initial reaction was to keep going, but in the blink of an eye I realized that when I've been in this situation before, to either stop or keep going, I usually move on about my business. I am trying to work on correcting my selfish behavior, but I'm human. Humans are selfish by nature.
After making a decision to keep going, I usually feel a tad guilty; not the lose-any-sleep type guilty but the I-could-have-put-that-elderly-woman's-groceries-in-the-trunk type guilty. The guilt doesn't last very long, which I'm not proud of, but my mind wanders for an instant while exploring the different scenarios of what could have happened to the rider where he felt the need to pull over. Maybe it was as simple as having to close an open saddlebag lid; or maybe his bike actually did break down and he was in need of a helping hand. If that were actually the case and I didn't stop, I'd have felt like a selfish prick, especially because I always carry some tools with me. But out of sight, out of mind, right? That's usually how my thinking goes, but this time I stopped.
After pulling up behind the Ultra Classic Electra Glide, I simply motioned to the guy with a thumb's-up type gesture to check if every thing was cool, and he motioned back with his thumb in the air, which told me that everything was fine and from there I realized that I could move on about my business. That whole transaction took roughly five seconds. Just five measly seconds out of my day to make sure that a fellow rider was OK was all it took. It made me feel a little bit better as a motorcyclist that I was there to help out a brother in need, because I have been that rider in need. And the fact that I was already late to work didn't matter to me, because I knew that serving the greater good of helping someone out was more important than being a few minutes late.
Do you have a story where you pulled over to help someone and it really made a difference in either of your lives? If so, I want to know about it.
Bye for now, Jordan