Lend a helping hand
September 18, 2003
Let me tell you a little story: This is about one of our immigrants. Not one of our Mexican friends that work so hard in this valley. No, this girl is from the cold, northern parts of this world.
She came here to this valley in the middle of the glory ’70s as a tourist and fell in love with the Rockies. She has been coming here every year since then, and decided to move over here for good about six years ago.
This girl is one of the absolute nicest girls I have ever met. She works two jobs, and on top of that, whenever anybody needs help, she is ALWAYS there. It does not matter if it is babysitting, helping out on a party, walking your dog or cleaning your house. She is always there for us. Always smiling, never complaining.
One day I asked her: “How come that you never say no to all the people that need your help?” She said, without hesitation, “It is really worth it to struggle to live here. I love this valley so much and if anybody wants my help, I will be happy to give it to them.”
Then one day, out of the blue, she got sick. Seriously sick. She can die.
But as many others, she did not have insurance. What did she do? She went to all the people she had helped for the last six years. She asked them for help. She thought that if everybody could help her with a little money she would be all right.
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But to her biggest surprise, the answer from most people was NO! They had either bought a new car or a new house or something else, so they could not afford to give a little bit. Notice that she asked for so little, just a few dollars from every person. But the answer was no.
Her whole debt is probably smaller than some people spend on one shopping trip on Rodeo Drive. But YOU said NO to somebody that gives her heart to you when you need it.
This is to compare to 1976 when one of our most beloved skiers here in this valley got sick with cancer. We collected over $20,000 in a month. And EVERYBODY was happy to help.
What has happened to us in this valley? Don’t we care about our neighbors and friends anymore? Why do people turn their backs on somebody in need? Is it so important that we have the latest in fashion, the biggest house or the nicest car?
Speaking of cars, I found out today that the bank is going to take her car if she doesn’t pay the $500 she owes them. She asked if she can get a few more days to try to find the money. Guess what, they said NO. Can we really let this happen?
I ask all of you to start to think a little bit more with your heart instead of your wallet. So what if it’s not tax-deductible. Just the pleasure to give a little to help a person who does not have what you have in the bank.
I know how good it feels. I’m not rich, but I have tried to help as much as I can. I have been there when she was crying, ready to give up, and I’ve supported as much as I can with money and other needs. And it feels good. Very good!
So what that I had to wait to buy something one month? I actually helped somebody that needed help.
Now it’s up to YOU people to look around and see who is looking for help. I hope that you can give a little bit of yourself. Money, food, clothes or maybe just a hug and a friendly ear if you can’t afford anything else.
If there are some of you that feel bad out there and want to give a helping hand, The Aspen Times has the address.
Thank you all for reading this.
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