Unexpected wisdom from a taxi driver. Part 1

I felt I needed to share this. This conversation I had with a taxi driver left me inspired, touched, amazed and heartbroken. Gave me hope, awareness and wisdom.

In about 30 mins, we spoke of religion, politics, race and culture. Basically everything “they” tell you not to talk about.

First, I noticed he had an accent. A familiar one, so I asked him where he was from, instead of making any assumptions but as I thought, he answered “Africa”. He was very kind and talkative. His accent wasn’t so heavy that I couldn’t understand what he was saying. He asked me where I was from, I answered that I grew up here in Minnesota, moved to Florida and came back to Minnesota after I had my son.

Everyone always looks at me like I’m crazy when I tell them I left beaches and palm trees and returned to the frozen tundra that Minnesota is for much of the year; and that was exactly what he asked next. I explained that my son has autism and that there is better care and services here than in Florida.

Then the topic moved onto autism. He spoke of his country. He said they don’t see that much over there. I took my medication because i felt my mind drifting and my eyes were locking, fixed on nothing in particular. and he asked if I was sick. I explained I have adhd and take meds to help manage it. He told me that when kids have Adhd in Africa, they don’t take medication, they put them in sports and activities but he had never seen the way people zone in and out like they do here. Adhd is different there.

He told me that he grew up in what is considered middle class over there. He attended university, their meals were provided but often, are what we would consider inadequate at best. He described one meal what they call “water sandwiches” in which they dunk bread in water because it is so stale and dry that it’s impossible to chew if they didn’t.

This is considered to be “well off”. I thought to myself, “shit. I have always had (for the most part) something to eat…we have no right to complain and I’m fucking lucky to have been born here.” Of course I replied politely careful not to sound braggy, but grateful, in which was how I was feeling.

Then, he told me about himself, with group of guys that are all from Africa, sponsor 20 children over there to take care of any medical expenses, food, and school. They send $1000 every month.

Think about that for a moment… He drives a taxi. He isn’t rolling in cash. He’s struggling just like the lot of us. Yet, he sacrifices probably close to half of his salary to children that otherwise aren’t given a chance at having a future.

To be continued…

Advertisements

July

Emotions run parallel as you speak of the past. I swiftly brush the dew from my cheeks, swallow the stone in my throat forget and hope the feeling won’t last.

I can’t help but wonder, whose hand you’d let loose, to plummet to boulders beneath, if ever faced with a situation to choose whom you’d pull to their feet.

Trying to understand, small things are easy to lose track But to me these small things are big things time passes and we can’t go back.

For everyday is someone’s birthday, death day, and anniversary. So it must silly to want one of those days just for me.

I can’t help but compare myself to another and can’t help but compete. I can’t do one without the other.

I can’t help but want to be more a lover or paramour when someone else was your wife then became a mother.

The scales are tipping but not in my favor. And I’ll keep on sipping because pain is my flavor.

The bittersweet taste nips at the tip of my tongue, I lick my lips and reminenice of the days we were young. Try not to dwell in the hell in my head, forget the fact I’ll never be wed. Shrug off the sting of 35, and that day that he forgot in July, but again, I say, I can’t help but compete, and still wonder who he would pull to their feet, I wonder if he ever forgot that day in April when life was with her was simple and stable.

I try not to cry over that day in July. When the only thing I wanted was the thing denied. Try not to weep because he doesn’t tell me “I love you” because it’s not what, but, how you speak and what you do.

I know it seems dramatic but that’s always been me, with a shot of cheap whiskey, and the need to compete.

I’ve never been good at finishing things they I’ve started but I can wet my lips until the sadness has been thwarted.

Just take a deep breath and swallow that stone and remember with him, I’m never alone.

Gifts are just gifts, unless it’s a life. And a bride is just a lover whom has been made a wife.