Last week’s storm left my driveway piled with broken branches and downed trees. On Saturday, there was still so much ice that I couldn’t even walk down my driveway, much less start trying to clear it. Mid-afternoon, two young men knocked on my door. They were about 21 or 22 years old, and called me “Miss Peg.” They told me that when they were in school, they had read Small Steps: The Year I Got Polio. (They knew where I live because all of the kids in my small town and the next town over know who I am and where I live.) They were driving past, saw the condition of my driveway, and said, “Miss Peg has polio problems. She can’t deal with those trees.” So they did it for me! They dragged all the heavy branches off the driveway and told a neighbor who was out with a chain saw about the one tree that was too heavy for them, and he cut that up. When they had finished, I could get my car out. They asked if I needed anything from town, and then they both wrote down their names and cell phone numbers and told me to call them if I needed any more help.
I’ve always known from my mail that I have the best readers in the world, but I never expected that the memory of a book they read a decade ago would prompt two young men to be so caring.