On Saturday, my friends and I were in the city until around midnight, and we were near where there weren't really any subway lines, so we decided to take a Lyft back to school. Usually I am a big proponent of the subway because it's only $2.75 a ride, which is relatively expensive in comparison to past MTA fares but decently cheap when compared to the $40 for an Uber or Lyft. Anyways, it was late, and there's always talk of the virus going around in close quarters, so the subway was out. We obviously couldn't walk, and I don't know what ever happened to cabs, so we dcided to tkae a Lyft, since Uber was too expensive too.
Being a 19-year-old girl, it has always been conditioned in me to never get in a car (or do anything, for that matter), with strangers, and Lyft directly opposes that exact principal. My friend's boyfriend was there, though, and in total there were four of us, so I figured it would be fine. Plus I just had a chocolate shake from Shake Shack and those never sit well so I wasn't trying to sit around the city.
First of all, the Lyft came within like 30 seconds of us calling it, so from that point we were off to a good start. My hesitation towards Lyft was slightly dispelled, but only slightly. We weren't even in the car yet. We got in, said hi to the driver, who was a gentle-looking sixty-something man, and buckled our seat belts. My friend Katie didn't put her seatbelt on at first, but I told her she should. (Did you know it isn't a law in Connecticut to wear a seatbelt in the backseat? Crazy. It doesn't matter though, this is New York). Anyways, all was shaping up rather nicely.
And it got better. As we started to drive, I gazed out the window and, thinking out loud to Katie said: "My phone's been dead all day but I feel good," to which she replied with something about people being on their phones too much. From the front, the driver (I wish I got his name) turned and said, "Do you want to charge your phone?" He handed me the chord connected to the dashboard of the car and I smiled at his random act of kindness. I love random acts of kindness. I made that known by thanking him many times before accepting the charger.
We continued driving for a couple minutes, and all was well, and then at a red light the driver turned back in his seat and asked if any of us wanted some gum. Again, being a 19-year-old girl, I felt that years of "don't talk to strangers" was preparing me for this moment. I should not talk to strangers, let alone take gum from them. Still, I took the gum when he offered it, because I felt bad, and I stuck it in my pocket because I still wasn't trying to eat it and get poisoned. I'm glad I did take the gum because as I took one of the strips, I saw that it was the last one in the wrapper. I could tell he had a good heart, because he was willing to split his last pieces of gum among four college kids he was driving from being out at night. I love good hearts.
Happy with a charged phone and an uneaten but kindly offered piece of gum, I was convinced things couldn't get any better. Half-way into the drive he asked whether we wanted to play any music, and seeing that my phone was connected it would be my music that would play. Basically, he was asking me to DJ. Anyone who knows me well knows that I really like to DJ. My music may not be that good, but I don't like listening to other people's music all the time, because if I'm going to listen to music I want it to be good, and if it's going to be good I want it to be mine.
So then I was a really happy camper, because I had a charged phone, and a token of generosity, and my music was playing. And he turned it up super loud, which is perfect, because anyone who knows me well also knows that I am practically deaf and I need things to be loud. And the reason all of these little things were making me so happy was because I never have moments like this anymore. We're all too focused on being extra cautious, or keeping a little too much to ourselves, that we never realize that not everyone in the world is out to get us. We never realize that there are good people and good things in the world, as much as we want to pay attention to terrorism, or violence, or disease. Sometimes it just takes 20 minutes in a random Lyft to realize it.