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Just Do The Right Thing

Talking to a co-worker at the hospital on the administration floor, I noticed a perplexed Hispanic woman who was obviously lost. We rushed to the woman and stated “Can we help you?” However, the woman, who was out of breath, could only speak to us in Spanish. Neither my co-worker nor I could speak any Spanish; however, somehow my friend asked, “You need to go to the Eye Center?” and the woman nodded yes.
We were so happy. We thought we had communicated with the woman in distress. (In reality, we should have known that the Hispanic woman could not have understood “You need to go to the Eye Center” as it was obvious to us from the beginning that she could not communicate in English.) I volunteered to take her to the Eye Clinic, located about 200 yards away on a different level.
 As we were walking to the Eye Center, the woman was trying vehemently to tell me something. I thought she was trying to thank me for helping her; however, as we got into the elevator I quickly knew that was the furthest thing from her mind.
As the elevator started to descend, I noticed the woman leaning on another woman, screaming and apparently becoming sick. People in the elevator quickly started asking, “Are you OK? What’s the matter?” However, I knew the answer to those questions. She was obviously petrified of elevators! Now, I knew, that instead of what I initially thought was her thanking me for sho wing her the way to the Eye Clinic, she was frantically trying to find the way to the stairs. Suddenly, I pressed the button for the next floor and we quickly exited from the elevator. She said, “Gracias,” [Spanish for thank you–living in Texas, even I knew that term]. However, my mind raced to another problem: how was she going to get to the Eye Center, or did she now even want to get to the Eye Center?
I asked, “Eye Center?” while pointing to my eyes. She quickly replied, “No, No, No . . Bambinos [babies].” I thought she meant the Children’s Hospital (located in another section of the hospital) but this time I wanted to make sure. 
I looked with her for a bilingual employee, and that interpreter told me that she wanted to visit her 5 year old niece, Mary Gonzales, who was sick and on the ninth floor of the Children’s Hospital.
Now I knew where she wanted to go, but I also knew she wanted to take the stairs. That meant going down six flights of stairs in one section of the hospital and up nine flights of stairs in another section of the hospital. I found the stairs and we descended all the way to the first level. I then went with her past the cafeteria so she could begin her ascent up the nine flights of stairs in the Children’s Hospital. However, as we approached the stairwell door, it hit me: some floors in the Children’s Hospital have locked stairwells from the inside (to prevent kidnappings). That meant I would have to accompany her all the way up nine flights to make sure that she had access on nine.

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Close Call

My job is in patio home sales, and quite often I encounter some unpleasant people. Usually I can contain my contempt and put on a happy face. Other times it can be more difficult to be civil in the face of nastiness and outright rudeness. I find that if someone comes

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