Stranger Danger!!! AAAhhhhh (insert kids running around yelling and waving hands in the air.)
I just pulled into my driveway after dropping my oldest daughter off at the school the other morning. As I walked around the car to get the baby out, I noticed a girl on the other side of the street looking at me. It was cold outside and all she had on was a summer dress. She was super tiny and the instrument she was fighting with was as big as she was. She smiled at me sheepishly and struggled down the street. My heart started hurting. She desperately needed help. I could offer her a ride but I needed to get the baby to bed and get some chores done. Then I envisioned a man with a cigarette, driving a white painter’s van, pulling up beside her and offering a ride. (Yes, I have a vivid imagination, this is why my blog is called Ridiculous Katie.)
I’ve seen her before but today she looked extra pathetic and I decided nothing bad was gonna happen to her on my watch so I put the baby back in the car and offered her a ride. She stood there a moment thinking. Then she said “please” and got in. She just got in the car with a complete stranger!!!! I wanted to yell at her and tell her how stupid that was!!! I wanted to lecture her for not wearing a jacket and to learn how to play a smaller instrument. I wanted to steal her phone and call her mom and tell her to have another talk about stranger danger because obviously she wasn’t paying attention!
I didn’t. I gave her the best smile I could fake and just talked to her. She’s in 6th grade and lives half a mile from school which is too close for the bus to pick her up so she walks. And sometimes the “C” on her euphonium (like a tuba but only a tad bit smaller) gets stuck. Ok, enough small talk, time to get down to business.
I realize the irony here but I needed to stress the importance of NEVER getting in the car with a stranger. I needed to know she wouldn’t do this again. I tried to explain to her that even though I’m a stranger, I’m a good stranger but not all strangers are and she should never do this again and if a man pulls up beside her in a van, she needs to run away as fast as she can and on the opposite side of the big sliding door.
What kind of stranger are you? Are you one that will go out of your way to brighten someone’s day or are you the kind that won’t? Are you the person that smiles at the mom with the screaming kid at the store or are you the kind that knows saying something snarky is EXACTLY what the mom needs to hear at that moment? Do you let the very pregnant lady use the restroom first or do you stand there like you don’t see her? Do you slow down to let the car in or do you follow them, road raging the whole way, and flip them off?
Lets vow to be better strangers. Lets look at others and not judge them or decide is our duty to teach them a lesson or inform them of how and why they suck. Let’s love others as ourselves and lets start today!
Thanks for allowing me to share my world with you…welcome to my brain.