a small town act of kindness in a big city

Last weekend, I was upstairs nursing C., when I heard a loud rap at the front door. Someone was using the knocker, which was unusual. Our place isn’t easy to find — we live in a courtyard, off of the street, through a narrow walkway and gate that is often locked.

I heard a woman ask in a loud voice, “Is Erin here?”

A. responded and the woman’s voice quieted down.

A few minutes later, A. peered into the dark bedroom.

“Did you hear that?” he said in a loud whisper. “It was the police.”

Earlier that day, I had gone for a run on the Rock Creek trail. I always take my license, credit card, health care card and $20 when I exercise. Lately, I also bring my phone in case A. needs me. And on that run, I had dropped my license while taking my phone out of the same pocket. When I returned home, I noticed it was gone and was annoyed with myself that I’d have to get another copy.

But a stranger had picked it up and turned it into the police station four blocks north of us.

“At first I was startled to see the blue uniform when I answered the door,” A. said. “I told her you were upstairs putting our newborn down, and we would pick up the license tomorrow. But she said she’d walk back to the station and bring it to us.”

So, on this Saturday evening at 9 p.m., an officer walked up and back and dropped off my license. All I had to do was sign for it.

To me, it was what the police would do in a small town, not in a place like D.C. It made me feel good about humanity.

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