It all began with a peaceful walk in a field. By chance, I came across a
huge expanse of spring grass and wildflowers that seemed to go on
forever, so I had to explore it. I walked through the field for about
twenty minutes without seeing anything but colorful flowers and knee high
grass from horizon to horizon. Then, in the distance, I saw something
that broke the line of color--a dark shape amid the grass.
I moved toward the shape and it turned out to be a man, sitting in the
field, smiling up at me. He was a thin, older fellow, sitting peacefully
with his legs crossed and his hands folded in his lap. As I came upon
him, he greeted me.
"Good day," he said. I nodded and bid him a good day as well, as he
continued to smile that contented smile. "Have you come far?" he asked.
"Just from up the road," I answered and then realized that I could no
longer see the road from where we were in the field. "What about
"Oh, I've been here for quite some time now," he told me, "just enjoying
I admitted that the view was quite spectacular and very peaceful, as
well. We shared a few moments of quiet thought together, the only sounds
we heard were the wind whispering through the grass and the lazy buzzing
of insects as they explored the fragrant flowers.
"As long as you're here," the old man said, "would you mind doing me a
I looked down at him for a moment, wondering what might be on his mind,
but could see no harm in offering him some assistance. "I suppose I
could do that," I told him.
He got to his feet and moved a little to his left and I saw something
lying nearly hidden in the grass. As he bent and attempted to lift the
object, I moved over to help him. It turned out to be an old, wooden
ladder, at least eight feet tall and much weathered by exposure to the
elements. It was also quite heavy.
"You need help moving this somewhere?" I asked.
"Actually, I would appreciate it if you would just hold it upright for
me," he said, once we got the ladder off the ground and standing straight
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