This morning I was walking along the main road to collect tasty fresh bread for our lunch from the local baker, as I do almost every Saturday. The sun was shining, life seemed good.
A little ahead of me walked a older lady. In a split second she fell, face down onto the pavement. As I ran forwards to see if she was hurt, she was already picking herself up, yet was shaking and clearly in shock. Blood was smeared on her upper lip.
There was no low wall for her to sit down on, so I stood with my arm around her as she tried to recover herself.
'Shall I call an ambulance for you?'
'No, I don't need one.'
'Is there anyone else I can call?'
A kindly Asian man stopped and asked the same questions, but the lady, who was about 60 and not infirm, resolutely refused all help. She had broken her two front teeth landing on her face. I offered to help her get home but she decided she might go straight to her dentist, as she thought he worked on a Saturday morning. I asked which one it was...about 10 minutes walk away, in the direction I was going anyway, so I offered to walk along with her, as I was not convinced she was fit enough to go on her own. There was no obvious reason why she had fallen and I was concerned she might have blacked out briefly. It was one of those occasions when I really wished I had some first aid training.
We had just started to walk forward very cautiously, when I heard a call from the other side of the road. An ambulance was moving slowly along in the traffic.
'Is everything OK?'
'She's had a fall and broken her tooth.'
'Shall we take a look?'
With that they did a U-turn and pulled up right beside us. Jumping out they asked a few questions. The lady repeated that she wanted to see if her dentist was around.
'Let us give you a lift there.'
'Thats a good idea.'
I said it quickly, thinking that if the dentist was not there they might take her on to hospital for a check-up. I left her in their safe hands.
When I emerged from a long wait in the baker's shop, I could see the ambulance still standing outside the dentist's surgery just a little further up the road.
Sometimes I really believe in angels.