The ability to drive can sometimes override the frustrations of breakdowns and similar events that can happen on a road trip. For JR Harding, a quad from Tallahassee, plans for a weeklong getaway at a resort about 120 miles away hit a snag part way to the destination. Harding was driving his full-sized Ford van, loaded with everything needed for the week, accompanied by his caregiver. “While refueling the vehicle, about 25 miles from my destination, the fuel pump on the van went out,” he said, “and I found myself stranded in Apalachicola, a historic fishing town located in the panhandle of Florida.”
Not to be deterred by the breakdown, Harding called the manager at the resort destination, who drove the 25 miles and loaded everything that had been in the van into the back of his pickup truck. That included the wheelchair. Harding got to ride in the cab of the truck. Other events that day included finding a local mechanic who did the repair at a reasonable cost and delivered the van to the resort a few days later, getting catheterized in the middle of a parking lot with passersby looking on, and actually arriving at the destination ahead of his wife and mother who had been traveling in a separate car due to the amount of supplies that were in the van.
Was the trip a success? “It was quite a day! Without the help of the park manager and the local mechanic, we would not have had a spectacular holiday without worries,” according to Harding, “but sometimes there are simply remarkable people in everyday life, and in everyday places.”