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Don't care if this has been told before, it's just a good story.

Discussion in 'The Lounge' started by GORRILLA, Jun 4, 2004.


    GORRILLA 1/2 ton status

    May 3, 2003
    Likes Received:
    TX panhandle, out at the river.
    Don\'t care if this has been told before, it\'s just a good story.

    /forums/images/graemlins/usaflag.gifCarl was a quiet man. He didn't talk much. He would always greet you
    with a big smile and a firm handshake. Even after living in our
    neighborhood for over 50 years, no one could really say they knew him
    very well. Before his retirement, he took the bus to work each morning.
    The lone sight of him walking down the street often worried us.

    He had a slight limp from a bullet wound received in WWII. Watching him,
    we worried that although he had survived WWII, he may not make it
    through our changing uptown neighborhood with its ever-increasing random
    violence, gangs, and drug activity. When he saw the flyer at our local
    church asking for volunteers for caring for the gardens behind the
    minister's residence, he responded in his characteristically unassuming
    manner. Without fanfare, he just signed up.

    He was well into his 87th year when the very thing we had always
    feared finally happened. He was just finishing his watering for the day
    when three gang members approached him. Ignoring their attempt to
    intimidate him, he simply asked, "Would you like a drink from the hose?"

    The tallest and toughest-looking of the three said, "Yeah, sure," with a malevolent
    little smile. As Carl offered the hose to him, the other two grabbed
    Carl's arm, throwing him down. As the hose snaked crazily over the
    ground, dousing everything in its way, Carl's assailants stole his retirement watch and his wallet, and then fled.

    Carl tried to get himself up, but he had been thrown down on his bad
    leg. He lay there trying to gather himself as the minister came running to
    help him. Although the minister had witnessed the attack from his
    window, he couldn't get there fast enough to stop it.

    "Carl, are you okay? Are you hurt?" the minister kept asking as he
    helped Carl to his feet. Carl just passed a hand over his brow and
    sighed, shaking his head.

    "Just some punk kids. I hope they'll wise-up someday." His wet clothes
    clung to his slight frame as he bent to pick up the hose. He adjusted
    the nozzle again and started to water.
    Confused and a little concerned, the minister asked, "Carl, what are you
    doing?" "I've got to finish my watering. It's been very dry lately, came
    the calm reply. Satisfying himself that Carl really was all right, the
    minister could only marvel. Carl was a man from a different time and

    A few weeks later the three returned. Just as before their threat was
    unchallenged. Carl again offered them a drink from his hose. This time
    they didn't rob him. They wrenched the hose from his hand and drenched
    him head to foot in the icy water. When they had finished their
    humiliation of him, they sauntered off down the street, throwing
    catcalls and curses, falling over one another laughing at the hilarity
    of what they had just done. Carl just watched them. Then he turned
    toward the warmth-giving sun, picked up his hose, and went on with his

    The summer was quickly fading into fall. Carl was doing some tilling
    when he was startled by the sudden approach of someone behind him.
    He stumbled and fell into some evergreen branches. As he struggled to
    regain his footing, he turned to see the tall leader of his summer
    tormentors reaching down for him. He braced himself for the expected

    "Don't worry old man, I'm not gonna hurt you this time." The young man
    spoke softly, still offering the tattooed and scarred hand to Carl. As
    he helped Carl get up, the man pulled a crumpled bag from his pocket and
    handed it to Carl.
    "What's this?" Carl asked.
    "It's your stuff," the man explained. "It's your stuff back. Even the
    money in your wallet."
    "I don't understand," Carl said. "Why would you help me now?" The man
    shifted his feet, seeming embarrassed and ill at ease. "I learned
    something from you," he said. "I ran with that gang and hurt people like
    you. We picked you because you were old and we knew we could do it. But
    every time we came and did something to you, instead of yelling and
    fighting back, you tried to give us a drink.
    You didn't hate us for hating you. You kept showing love against our
    hate." He stopped for a moment. "I couldn't sleep after we stole your stuff, so
    here it is back." He paused for another awkward moment, not
    knowing what more there was to say. "That bag's my way of saying thanks
    for straightening me out, I guess." And with that, he walked off down
    the street.
    Carl looked down at the sack in his hands and gingerly opened it. He
    took out his retirement watch and put it back on his wrist. Opening his
    wallet, he checked for his wedding photo. He gazed for a moment at the
    young bride that still smiled back at him from all those years ago.

    He died one cold day after Christmas that winter. Many people attended
    his funeral in spite of the weather. In particular the minister
    noticed a tall young man that he didn't know sitting quietly in a
    distant corner of the church. The minister spoke of Carl's garden as a
    lesson in life. In a voice made thick with unshed tears, he said, "Do
    your best and make your garden as beautiful as you can. We will never
    forget Carl and his garden." The following spring another flyer went up. It

    "Person needed to care for Carl's garden." The flyer went unnoticed by
    the busy parishioners until one day when a knock was heard at the
    minister's office door. Opening the door, the minister saw a pair of
    scarred and tattooed hands holding the flyer. "I believe this is my job,
    if you'll have me," the young man said.

    The minister recognized him as the same young man who had returned
    the stolen watch and wallet to Carl. He knew that Carl's kindness had
    turned this man's life around. As the minister handed him the keys to
    the garden shed, he said, "Yes, go take care of Carl's garden and honor
    him." The man went to work and, over the next several years, he tended
    the flowers and vegetables just as Carl had done. In that time,
    he went to college, got married, and became a prominent member of the
    community. But he never forgot his promise to Carl's memory and kept the
    garden as beautiful as he thought Carl would have kept it.
    One day he approached the new minister and told him that he couldn't
    care for the garden any longer. He explained with a shy and happy smile,
    "My wife just had a baby boy last night, and she's bringing him home on
    Saturday." "Well, congratulations!" said the minister, as he was
    handed the garden shed keys. "That's wonderful! What's the baby's name?"
    "Carl," he replied.

    If this touched you as it did me, take 60 seconds and give this a shot!
    All you do is:
    1. Simply ask God to bless the person who sent this to you. Ask Him to
    enlarge this person's territory as they reach out in love to others.
    Ask God to protect this person from the evil one that he or she may not
    cause pain.

    2. Now...email "Carl's Garden

  2. big83chevy4x4

    big83chevy4x4 3/4 ton status

    Mar 22, 2002
    Likes Received:
    Sheridan, Michigan
    Re: Don\'t care if this has been told before, it\'s just a good story.

    that is a great story.
    /forums/images/graemlins/usaflag.gif /forums/images/graemlins/usaflag.gif /forums/images/graemlins/usaflag.gif /forums/images/graemlins/usaflag.gif /forums/images/graemlins/usaflag.gif /forums/images/graemlins/usaflag.gif

    DBLAZER 1/2 ton status

    Apr 2, 2000
    Likes Received:
    Haslet, Tx
    Re: Don\'t care if this has been told before, it\'s just a good story.

  4. Goober

    Goober 1/2 ton status

    Apr 26, 2002
    Likes Received:
    Mayberry (Auburn, WA)
    Re: Don\'t care if this has been told before, it\'s just a good story.

  5. 84gmcjimmy

    84gmcjimmy 1 ton status

    Dec 3, 2003
    Likes Received:
    Re: Don\'t care if this has been told before, it\'s just a good story.

    great story /forums/images/graemlins/bow.gif godbless people like carl /forums/images/graemlins/peace.gif
  6. offroadcowboy

    offroadcowboy 1/2 ton status

    Jan 29, 2004
    Likes Received:
    Re: Don\'t care if this has been told before, it\'s just a good story.

    Great Story! Food for thought . /forums/images/graemlins/usaflag.gif /forums/images/graemlins/peace.gif

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