My house sits at a T intersection, facing a short street that comes off a larger street. This evening, I was looking out my kitchen window and saw a white minivan pull over on the side of the short street. A man got out and started peeing in the street. I walked outside, put my arms out, and said, “Really??” He slowly got back in his van, backed out to the main road, and drove away.
About two hours later, I heard a very soft knock on my front door. A man was standing on the porch, and he backed away from the door when I answered it. He was covering his mouth, and it was all he could do to keep from sobbing uncontrollably. He just kept repeating, “I’m so sorry. I’m so sorry.” It took me a second to realize that it was the guy who had been peeing in the street. He had come back to apologize.
He said that he was a delivery driver, and that he had been driving all day, and that it was an emergency, and he just had to stop. He was afraid he would lose his job. I told him I understand all of that, that I was never going to call the cops, but I also said that there is a convenience store on the corner he could have stopped at. It hadn’t occurred to me until just now that he couldn’t stop at a fast food restaurant because they’re all closed. I told him numerous times that I appreciated his apology. He got himself under some semblance of control, and walked away.
After he left, it also occurred to me just how much courage that took to come back and apologize. He had no way of knowing what my reaction would have been. I could have berated him, beaten him up, or even shot him. Who knows these days? Though I’m not thrilled that he was relieving himself in my street, I am deeply touched by his actions afterwards. We all do things we perhaps shouldn’t have done, make mistakes, whatever, but we are measured by how we deal with it.