Happy Birthday Joe!

cbyusBy Charlotte Byus
This week I have come up with several things to write about, but that was as I was falling asleep. And let’s face it I do not remember any of the stories. Georgia asked me Saturday at church if I had a story and I said no, the brain is slick this week, no wrinkles in the brain are working. Then we went to work Sunday and after work some of us went to Mama Teresa to celebrate Joe’s birthday.

Joe is a man we met through working at Intercruises. Intercruises is the service that assists Royal Caribbean with helping passengers make a smooth transfer from land to sea and back. Joe is a quiet man but is always happy and inquisitive about so many things. He is a great listener and enjoys every person he meets. His job is to greet you just as you are going on the gangway to get on the ship. He always says “Hurry Back” with a big smile. Most people look at him with a smile too, until they realize what he has just said. Of course, then most say, NO! He does not care, he keeps smiling and waving, because he would love to see them again and learn how their trip was.

I met Joe on my first day at work, he was on the floor in the back of the waiting area next to the bathrooms. Yes, on the floor. “If you see something, say something,” so I did. I went running back to Laura, who has a walkie talkie. “Laura! there is an old man on the floor!!” So we found someone to assist us and had an ambulance called. Joe said, “I’m fine, just a little tummy ache, sometime laying on the floor helps.” By the time EMS got through the traffic at the terminal, Joe was sitting up and talking to the young people who came to help him. That is our Joe.

Then he and RR got to talking about our sailing adventures and RR mentioned I had learned to use a navigational sextant by shooting the stars. Oh boy, Joe was on my trail! Who, What, When and How all in one sentence. Would I please bring the sextant to work so he could see it and find out how to work with it. When Joe gets on something he holds on. For weeks, “Did you bring it?” I finally had to tell him I no longer had the sextant. He was so disappointed, but in a split second he says, “Well how do you search the stars now?” I broke his heart, I said, with my phone, there is an app for that. I thought he was going to cry, and I got a sad face and “Oh Charlotte”.

Learning more about Joe, we found out he has no family left, he is the last and he was going to spend his Birthday alone. Well readers, that was not going to happen!

Joe had so much fun, we sang Happy Birthday twice to him and he had a smile from ear to ear. As we were leaving he had tears in his eyes and said thank you so much.

Laura and Chris had a new pup who was just learning about crate living and RR was dead tired and totally out of breath. But our trip on the ferry was so full of happiness and love we forgot all about what lay ahead of us.

I can not begin to tell you the joy these few hours gave all of us because we were able to take a little time to share love and laughter with a lonely person.


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