How To: Ask for a Ride

A few weeks ago, I started to get - to put it kindly - whiney.

Transportation limitations

The transportation company reduced their availability to where they are now good only for rides to work and the doctor. People who used to take me on adventures drifted away during the pandemic. Consequently, I was suffering from a good case of SSDD (same stuff, different day) -itis and FOMO. FOMO is fear of missing out, by the way.

Overcoming SSDD

Fortunately, this week has been better. Although it may sound a little crazy, last week, I sent an SOS to my guardian angel. My guardian angel is - I believe - my grandmother, who has been dead for the past 63 years. Grandma came through in spades! I have done several different things this week, all with different people.

Therefore, I would like to thank everyone who came to my rescue this week. Thanks to my Zumba instructor and two friends, as well as the 5- and 7-year-old daughters of one of them.

Thanks to my husband, who took me for ice cream. The ice cream shop is close enough to walk but is on the other side of a three-lane highway. Would it be worth it to risk my life for a large, soft-serve, twist cone? Maybe some days, but I did not have to decide this week.

And finally, thanks to my guardian angel, who works in mysterious ways that I try not to question. All I know is they work!

How to ask for help

But what to do if you do not have a guardian angel to ask? How do you ask for help? Should you ask for help?

Asking strangers

To the question of "Should we ask for help?" my answer, as a visually impaired person who I assume is in good standing, is a qualified yes. If done right, a request can be a win-win situation. Many times, I have waylaid a stranger in the store to ask if he sees what I am looking for. I generally say I am visually impaired and then thank him profusely. Helping others makes us feel good.

Asking friends

With other wants and needs, I have developed slightly different rules. My immediate goal is usually to snag a ride somewhere. To this end, I try not to make people go too far out of their way. My regular rides either have to go past my house to get where they are going or only go a couple of miles extra. I walk down to the end of our driveway to my “bus stop.” 99% of the time, I am waiting for them. I can count on one hand the times a driver has waited for me. In other words, I try to be considerate.

And if they demure, or the answer is no, I accept it. I am pushy by nature, but not when asking for a favor.

Other tips

Those are my rules, but what do the experts say? WikiHow suggests you first consider other options. If you do not live in a transportation desert, that might be a taxi or a city bus. Consider the other person’s situation. Can they do it easily? The website suggests you just come out and ask. Don’t be cute or too obtuse. Make sure your request is not too much time or effort and offer to pay. Take no for an answer. If they say yes, don’t be such a horrible passenger, you never hear yes again! Lastly, plan to reciprocate however you can.

Hopefully, that little primer might make it easier for you to ask for a ride. You just might find your own guardian angel or two here on Earth!

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