Kind and Caring People

Yesterday I had several examples of people being kind and caring in which to appreciate. The first was related to one of my daughters, who was in New Jersey with one of her college roommates for the weekend. She joined me in Manhattan for the Iowa Hawkeyes game watch (and while we had a great time, our beloved Hawkeyes lost!), and then she was to take a bus back to NJ to join her friend. While I accompanied her to the Port Authority and saw her off on what we thought was the right bus, it turns out that it was not. Added to that was the fact that her cell phone battery had died, so she had no cell phone.

Before I left the Port Authority (and not yet knowing that my daughter was on the wrong bus),  I stopped to buy a juice from a store there for my ride home. A woman with a young child was ahead of me, along with a customer who was buying, too.  The woman with her child was told by the cashier that she was 50 cents short, so she gave the cashier a debit card, which was declined.  The customer next to her reached in her pocket and paid the 50 cents.  Later, the woman with the child found a dollar and tried paying the other woman back and they “discussed” whether or not she would take it. I smiled as I watched this exchange of gratitude, happy for the kind, caring woman who helped her out.

A little later, as I’m coming off of the subway, I received a call from a number I didn’t know: it’s my daughter, using  someone else’s phone on the bus that was taking her way out of her way into New Jersey to places I’d never heard of!  She used this man’s phone several times to call both her friend in NJ and me.  In the end, she was able to get off the bus and wait at a restaurant (where there were more kind people who offered her things and didn’t require her to buy anything) until her friend picked her up. In fact, she said she got to watch some of the Ohio State-Penn State game! After she was safely in the car with her friend, my daughter told me that the man and his wife offered to drive her to her friend’s house, too, if needed.

While one might look at that last offer with a word of “caution” about not accepting rides from strangers, I think it’s evidence of the kind, caring people who were part of our day yesterday. We’ll never know for sure, but I am very grateful for that man letting her use his phone and helping her figure out where she had gotten “lost.”  This was the second example of kind, caring people who offered their assistance to complete strangers yesterday.

And while I’m still in shock over my Iowa Hawkeyes’ loss from yesterday, I’m  grateful I had the opportunity to share it with one of my daughters.

I Love My Iowa Hawkeyes!

I have a passion for college football, and particularly for my Iowa Hawkeyes team. They are my team and have been since I can remember. I’m originally from Iowa and particularly from the Iowa City area, so it follows that I’m a true Iowa Hawkeye fan. So if you add on a couple of degrees from the University to that, you have a recipe for a true fanatic. Then again, if you’re from anywhere in Iowa, you’re likely to either be a Hawkeye,  Cyclone or Panther fan. (Cyclones are the ones at Iowa State and the Panthers are from the University of Northern Iowa).   And if you dare to get confused on which school is which, watch out! The fans will set you straight right away.

Why do I love my Iowa Hawkeyes and college football in general so much? Let me give you a taste of what it means to me and how much I really appreciate it all.

I love the anticipation of  the weekly Saturday game, the camaraderie of talking about the upcoming game with other fans, the planning on where to watch it (or) where to tailgate and what to wear, if I have tickets and can travel back for the game, the suspense and controversy over the weekly football rankings, the unity of the fans brought together toward a common goal, the excitement inside the stadium, full of rituals like the marching band, the tunnel and the players who join hands together entering the stadium like a herd of hungry cattle rushing into a pasture of green grass to eat, the coordinated effort of which color to wear for a particular game, the celebration of every first down, and particularly those key plays like interceptions, forced fumbles and 70 yard + touchdown runs, the energy of a stadium full of fans cheering on their team, the excitement of the players as they encourage fans to yell loudly by waving their hands up and down, the noise from the crowd of the opposing team’s 3rd down attempt, cheering our defense on,  the appreciation of the fans by the players when after a win on the road when the team gathers to sing the “Iowa Fight Song” together with their fans…..

….I could go on and on but it’s time to take a deep breath! 🙂 What is evident about being a Hawkeye fan is that we are extremely passionate and loyal to our team. I “survived” the years of Iowa Hawkeye football where we used to hold the national record for the most losing seasons, and was a loyal Hawkeye and would go to games, even when we got beat by scores like 64-0. The difference between then and now is that the fans would get excited if we scored ANY points at all back then, while now we’ve seen a much more favorable winning streak over the years.

Hawkeye fans are special fans. They stick with their team over decades, pass down family traditions generation after generation, have all types of Hawkeye gear to show off their Hawkeye pride, and can tell you where they were watching the Iowa vs. Michigan game in 1985–and if they’re not old enough to remember that game, they have a family member who does so they’ve heard the story of how exciting that game was between the #1 Iowa vs. #2 Michigan. (By the way, I was in the stands, cheering on my Hawkeyes to the victory.)

Iowa football  brings people together in ways that people wouldn’t normally get together otherwise, united by the ONE thing that matters: their black and gold. I love how being a Hawkeye fan connects me with others.  I can travel the world with an Iowa Hawkeye shirt on and always find someone who yells out, “Let’s go Hawks!” or makes a comment about how good the game was.

Yes, I love my Iowa Hawkeyes and I’m glad I was born a Hawkeye fan. I wouldn’t have it any other way. Didn’t you know that it’s in our genes? 🙂  And no matter how far away I live from Iowa City, I will always be a Hawkeye fan.  Let’s go Hawks!