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A close-up of a newly opened delphinium flower (Summer 2013).

Sunday, March 31, 2013

When God Winks

This happened a few years ago: I was on my way home one cold, late wintry afternoon. It was cold, probably -17 C, and I was tired after a day's work. I was on a bus when I noticed a man, probably in his late 60s, sitting near me, with blood oozing from his nose. There were blood stains in front of his jacket. He was visibly shaking. He asked the driver to stop at the bus stop where he could take another bus to take him to Foothills Hospital. We stopped at the same stop point and I could see that he had difficulty walking. After crossing the street, we went to the same bus shelter and by this time, he looked like he will collapse anytime. I told him to sit down, to hang on, and assured him I will help him get to Foothills Hospital.

I frantically waved at an incoming ambulance with no siren lights. I quickly realized you have to call an ambulance instead of simply waving at it because it merely passed by without stopping. Some agonizing minutes later, a bus with a notice that says "Out of Service" approached. I went to the curb of the road, waved frantically, and the bus driver stopped. I explained the situation to him and pleaded to take the man and me to the emergency section of Foothills Hospital. He must have been a kind person because he did.

A month later, I saw the same man on the same bus route. He smiled when he saw me so I moved and sat close to him. I asked him what his problem was when I brought him to Foothills Hospital. He said he was experiencing internal bleeding and was in the hospital for 5 days. He further told me that he needs a weekly blood transfusion and that he was on his way to Foothills Hospital for that. He thanked me for saving his life because the doctors told him had he arrived 30 minutes later, he would have died from internal bleeding.

Lessons of this story: I learned that you have to be compassionate to anyone who needs your help, even to a complete stranger. Life is precious and if you can extend one man's life by doing what you could to help, then that is a moment when God winks at you and gives you His loving embrace.