Pay it forward

A few weeks ago there was an issue at my place and I needed to turn the water off to the whole lower half of the building while I sorted it. I did not know how to do this myself, sent messages to the landlord of course, but realized quickly that time was of the essence and I needed to figure out how to deal with it on my own right now.

So I did what any sensible person would do. I went for a walk. 🙂

I went looking for someone I could recite my list of Spanish words to, the Spanish words that would convey my need for assistance regarding a certain water situation. Hopefully.

I found a guy all the way at the end of the street who (mercifully) speaks a little English too so after he let me struggle through my Please Helps Me speech, he revealed that his English was marginally better than my Spanish so we could just Spanglish our way through this little situation.

He walked back with me and found the valve(s) to turn off the water to just my floors, and also to the whole building. With the water off I was able to handle the rest of the situation myself.

Thanked him profusely, and now that we’ve met, of course I see him everywhere.

This morning I was at the tienda getting some food for the day, and he walked in. My bill was not very big, but all I had in terms of money was a big bill, so I told her to add his tortillas on to my bill to make it a little easier for everyone.

He said I didn’t have to do that and I told him I wanted to. He helped me when I needed him, and though he didn’t really need me here, I wanted to buy his tortillas for him. Just to do something nice.

I told him not to think of it so much as payback… he could just pay it forward instead. Do something nice for someone else. Pass it on.

“Pay it forward… I like that”, he says.

I like it too.


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