Friday, May 30, 2014

30:05:14 Being brave!

I have a friend. She is fearless. She will talk to anyone she comes across in day to day life and will always strike up conversations, asking them about themselves and learning more about them in 5 minutes than I would in a year. She has a way of making normal people feel that their unique stories are important. 

I saw a man today. He was cutting up a tree trunk with a chainsaw. I passed him on the way to the post office. I passed him again on the way home. I saw the circles of fresh cut logs stacked into a wall behind him and I so wanted to stop and take a photo. But not while the man was there. Maybe later when he was finished and gone back inside.

I drove past him again as I dropped Sian to piano. The light was fading fast. He was still there, still cutting and stacking. The urge to stop and take a photo nagged and nagged at me. I found myself thinking of my friend. She would tell me to stop the car, to say hello and be brave. I passed him again on the way home. I slowed the car down, my heart pounded and my cheeks burned. As I pulled in I grabbed my phone and my courage and got out of the car before I could chicken out. He stopped cutting, looked at me approaching and stood there with a surprised looked on his face.

"I'm so embarrassed" I mumbled "I don't normally do this kind of thing" His eyes twinkled and he broke into a grin. I told him I am taking a photo a day for this year. I said I had been admiring the growing wall of logs and wanted to take a photo of it but that I had not wanted to stop while he was still there. I asked if I could take a photo. He laughed and said of course.

I took one quick photo, my cheeks still hot and turned to get back in the car. He asked me my name, I answered and asked the same back of him. In the next few minutes the most lovely story unfolded. He was Henri, The tall tree was dead and he had wanted to cut it down for months before it fell and caused injury or damage. His wife wouldn't let him because he was 71 and his knees weren't as strong as they used to be. But she was gone to visit their daughter for a few days. She had made him promise to ring a tree surgeon and he had, three times with no answer. He had gotten his ladder out, leaned it up against the tree and looked at it. He was hesitant to climb the ladder and that's when his neighbour had come out and offered him help. Between the two of them they had cut the dead tree down. The younger neighbour up the ladder and Henri down below shouting instructions. He wanted to get the wood all cut and stacked before his wife returned.

I'm so glad I stopped.

Glad I was brave.

Glad I followed my friends example.

Glad I'm not Henri when his wife comes home!

1 comments - click here to leave your comment:

  1. Love this story, Gina especially the last sentence. Reading your blog is always so refreshing, like having a coffee catch up with a friend. I've been away too long.