Sort of a board of directors, but better. I met two young men today, my two new physical therapists. It’s a little weird having a handsome young man twisting you like a Gumby doll, sort of pleasant. But, hey, medically required.
There’s Tony, the massage therapist; Alex, the hairdresser; Mike, the shoe repairman; Jose, the drycleaning guy; Hassan, who runs the gourmet store; Gregg, who owns the hardware store; Aqueel, the local pharmacist who sat me down to actually explain the effects of various medications, John, the X-ray tech at my doctor’s who’s always got a smile, a bunch of orthopedic surgeons dealing with my latest tear, sprain or fracture and Bill, my irascible mechanic of 15+ years.
If it were not for their skill, good humor, warmth and concern, the world would be a much colder place. I can barter with Tony, know I can rely on Alex to give me a haircut that gives me enough confidence to appear on TV, try some amazing new cheese that Hassan will slice off and offer, as he does to all his customers, with a gentle smile. One of my doctors, an avid shooter, keeps giving people copies of my book and another loves art as much as I do. I value the humanity behind our commercial or medical transactions.
I grew up an only child with my Dad gone a lot traveling on business and was living on my own at 19. Taught to be independent, expected to fend for myself and figure most things out without coaching or instruction, I really appreciate these smart, competent men and the way they generously and good-naturedly help me navigate my challenges, whether getting my arthritic hip into good enough shape to hit the softball diamond this summer or making sure the battered old Subaru keeps running smoothly.
I don’t know what I’d do without them.
Is there a team of guys (or women) like this in your life? Whose skills do you rely on beyond yourself or your immediate family?