For example, on Friday, February 14, I flew from Columbus to Chicago for visit with my daughter Claire and her husband Miguel,
My plan had been to get off the train at the Western stop, which I did,
However it turned out that the exit from the train platform was through one of those old-fashioned turnstiles,
"You gotta push the suitcase through first," said a young guy who was looking at me from the other side of the turnstile. "Back up," he said, "and I'll pull it from my side."
Now, I know you shouldn't judge a book by it's cover or a person by their looks, but this kid was underfed-skinny with long, straggly hair and a long, straggly beard, and he was dressed in a long, straggly, worn-looking coat with a straggly, worn-looking wool hat pulled over his straggly hair, and I was judging that as soon as he got my suitcase around to his side of the turnstile he'd be off with it as fast as his legs could carry him and the suitcase.
But no. After he pulled my suitcase through the turnstile he waited for me to turn myself through, then he rolled my suitcase back to me. He didn't even ask for any kind of financial compensation for his trouble, though if I hadn't been too bundled and trussed-up to easily reach my wallet I'd have offered him some sandwich money anyway. However, he quickly walked off to the train platform, apparently having someplace to go.
Safely on the other side of the train exit, I next faced what I had anticipated would be the greatest challenge of the trip: negotiating my gargantuan suitcase down the steep flight of stairs from the platform to the sidewalk without taking a tumble, and it would surely be a bad tumble at that.
While I stood on that landing girding my loins, so to speak, up the steps towards me came another young man, this one every bit as scrawny and scraggy-looking as the youngster who'd helped me through the turnstile, though this fellow was clothed in a patchy, pie-baldish jacket and he had a shock of green hair that appeared to be growing upwards in a pile on top of his head.
"Here, let me help you with that," said this colorful fellow as he reached for my suitcase, which I compliantly handed over, and as he lugged it down the stairs, much quicker and more nimbly than I'd have been able to, I thought to myself, 'bye-bye suitcase.
But no again. At the bottom of the stairway he handed me back my suitcase and then was on his way back up the stairs to the train platform.
Safely on the sidewalk and feeling much gratitude towards my kind young stranger benefactors, I continued lugging my suitcase down and across the streets towards my daughter and son-in-law's house,