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Just Around the Bend

Theresa was sitting at the concierge desk when a woman walked in. She came up to the desk, and was clearly frazzled. Without even giving Theresa a chance to wish her a good morning, the woman started talking.

“Hi there,” she started, but didn’t wait for a response.”My husband and I came in for an appointment this morning, and while we were in here a tire on our car went flat. Can you call someone to come help us? Or do you have a phone number or something like that?”


“Sure thing,” Theresa said. Her first thought was to call the hospital’s public safety office. She talked to the safety official for a minute, asking the woman questions and conveying them to the official through the phone.

“Where is the car located?” the official finally asked.

When Theresa asked the woman, she answered, “About a block down, at a metered spot on the street.”

“Unfortunately, there’s nothing we can do for that,” the official explained to Theresa. “We don’t have the authority to do anything to vehicles that aren’t on hospital property.” Theresa thanked him and hung up. She explained the situation to the woman, who became even more agitated.

“Well, what am I supposed to do?” she asked desperately.

“Don’t worry,” Theresa soothed her. “I can call someone else and see if they can help. Just give me another few minutes to make a call.” The woman calmed down a bit, and Theresa called one of the car vendors that Errand Solutions often worked with.

Theresa explained the situation to the receptionist at the vendor’s office. “Not a problem,” she said after Theresa finished. “We can have someone over there in about fifteen minutes.”

After thanking the vendor, Theresa wrote the name of the company on a piece of paper and handed it to the woman so that she’d know which company’s truck to watch for. Armed with this information, the woman left to wait by the car with her husband.

A little while later, Theresa looked up to find the woman and a man wearing the car vendor’s uniform walking up to the desk. “So, the car’s parked on a bend in the road,” the vendor said. “In order to safely replace the tire, I’m going to have to have the police come out and direct traffic, but my phone is on the blink.”

“Okay,” Theresa said. “I’ll give the police department a call for you.” Theresa dialed the non-emergency number for the local police department and made the request for a traffic cop to come and assist with roadside maintenance. When the vendor and the woman walked away, Theresa thought that everything had been taken care of and that the woman and her husband would be on their way in no time.

Much to Theresa’s surprise, the woman came back to the concierge desk one more time. Wondering what else she could possibly do for the woman, Theresa asked how things had gone. “Everything went off without a hitch,” the woman said. “Thank you so much – we really needed all the help you gave us, and we really appreciate it.”

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