Sometimes casual conversations provide a lesson in humility.
Some years ago I was a known public figure by being a local television anchorman in a large metropolitan market.
I was on the air delivering the news each weeknight at six o’clock and eleven O’clock and did so for many years.
On weekends, I would choose to get away to the mountains for relaxation in a reclusive environment. Sometimes my family would join me and other times I would go alone.
Late one Friday night after a newscast I drove alone to a mountain cabin, I stopped at a roadside tavern to pick up a six-pack of beer. I ordered the beer and said to the bartender I’d have a short one since I was only a few miles from my destination.
As he poured a small glass of draft with a creamy bead on it, the guy next to me said, “I know who you are.” I introduced myself and said, “thank you for tuning in from time to time.”
He said, “You have an interesting job.” I agreed with him. Then he said, “I do too.”
“What do you do?” I asked.
“I’m a garbage man.” He replied. Before I could say anything, he continued. “ I see more wonders of nature hanging off the back of a garbage truck than most people see in a lifetime.”
I listened with wonder and attention as I sipped my beer.
He said, “You know, there is one spot in all these beautiful mountains where you can see seven mountain tops from one spot. Not very many people know where that is. I’ll show you sometime if you’d like?”
I said, “ I would.”
We never did connect again. I’m sorry we didn’t for I would have liked to have known this fellow a lot better.