As most of our regular readers know, we are lucky enough to have the world's best and safest cab driver living right across the street from us. Jorge has taken us, and many of our guests, all over the area, and back and forth to the Guayaquil Airport quite often, He has always driven in a safe and sane manner. What a pleasure to reach your destination and not have your heart racing and the blood pressure off the scale.
Rox and I have often commented on how fortunate we and our guests are to have him living so close by.
Yesterday, Jorge related to us his company's desire that all of their drivers must upgrade their license to “professional”, as opposed to “type B” which is what I have. This license is similar to the chauffeur's license in the US.
To do this, he must complete the three week intensive Driving School course. Now this is a fine idea, because it is good to know that cab drivers have more training and instruction (especially ours).
The kicker, of course, is the price of the school. It costs $500 to attend, and neither the Company or the school will offer financing.
He asked us if we would loan him the money and mentioned that he had already been contacted by one suite couple for a round trip reservation.
Since it is a real slippery slope to begin to loan money to your neighbors, Roxanne and I reluctantly said that we could not do it, but that we would call the director of the school to see if we could convince them to let him pay for the instruction as he attended.
We had a couple of other guests who had mentioned that they would like to use Jorge, so Roxanne had the idea that maybe we could explain his situation, and maybe they would graciously pay for their trips ahead of time.
We sent out his story to three guests, and were astounded that we had collected everything that Jorge needed in just about 30 minutes. Are they great or what! We were going to add a little to the pot to make it hit $500 even, but when he got here, Jorge had already collected $100 toward tuition. The honest guy that he is, he slid back one of the $100's and said that he already had part. Good man!
I wrote up a contract for Jorge, complete with calendar pages showing the exact time and dates that he was committed for. And, when we showed him the money, he almost had a tear—you could see, going through his mind, that this was a change in his future.
He assured us that this dough was all going for tuition, and that he was going to get in his car right then, drive to Santa Elena and sign up for his course work.
Now...is that a great story, or what? And you three guests—we are putting a bunch of gold stars by your names—You've already done good—and you ain't even here yet!!!