It just slipped out of my hand.
The store was teeming with people. My hat and one of my gloves lay on the floor just in front of my wheels. No way I was going to be able to get them. Joe, who has not been feeling well this holiday season, was at home. I, on the other hand, love to go out on Boxing Day to do some hard core shopping. I'd been carrying my hat and gloves in my hand when I'd stopped to look at something, they slipped to the floor.
Though the store was full of people, there were few near where I was. I didn't want to leave my hat. It's a Tesco hat and I can't easily get another one. I like that hat. So I began scanning those who were within earshot. I imagine that everyone who routinely needs the help of others develops a personal set of criteria for determining the 'askability' of strangers. I had just spotted someone to ask when suddenly ...
... my hat and glove were handed to me. A small child, a cute little boy had crawled around the base of my chair and saw my stuff on the floor. A child pre-speech had figured out that help was needed and very willingly had picked up my hat with one hand and my glove in the other. He stood on unsteady feet. Feet new to standing. My hat looked enormous in his hand, my glove was nearly as long as his arm. His smile was huge, he knew he was helping.
I said, 'Thank you so much.' I took my hat and was reaching for my glove when his father spotted him handing me my glove. He came right over and I was just thanking the boy for my glove when he arrived. I hoped against hope that the boy wouldn't be punished for helping a stranger. I hoped well, Dad just took his child up into his arms and gave him a kiss. 'Thanks for helping out buddy,' Dad said.
'Nice kid,' I said.
'He is,' Dad said.
I drove away with my gloves and hat in my bag so I wouldn't drop them again. I'd learned my lesson. I hope the little boy did too.