Smorgasbord Posts from Your Archives 2021 – #Pot Luck – #Kindness – A Gallon of Water by Gwen M. Plano

Since this series began in January 2018 there have been over 1000 Posts from Your Archives where bloggers have taken the opportunity to share posts to a new audience… mine. The topics have ranged from travel, childhood, recipes, history, family and the most recent series was #PotLuck where I shared a random selection of different topics.

In this series I will be sharing posts from the last six months of 2020

It is an opportunity to showcase your writing skill to my readers and also to share on my social media. Which combined is around the 46,000 mark. If you are an author your books will be mentioned too, along with their buy links and your other social media contacts. Head over to find out how to participate: Posts from Your Archives 2021

This is the first post from author Gwen Plano from July 2020 and she shares a memory of a day when she was in dire need of assistance.

A Gallon of Water

I was driving an old U-Haul truck from Davis, California to Irvine going south on Interstate 5, when things went terribly wrong.

Packed with everything I owned, the truck lumbered up and down hills until it found its pace in the San Joaquin Valley. A few hours into the journey, I felt rather good about myself. I had just accepted a new position in Irvine, and it seemed that everything was working out perfectly. I had sold my home and found another, and soon I would be living within an easy drive to family.

All was well until the truck’s warning lights flashed and steam started rising from the hood.

My usual response to any car problem was to call my dad. But I didn’t want to do that. I knew what he would say. After a barely audible mumble, he’d ask. “You didn’t bring water?!” In my defense, I didn’t know that Bakersfield is hot, very hot, in July. A phone call would mean a confession, and I was too proud to admit that I simply had forgotten to bring water. I quickly pulled over to a nearby rest stop.

While steam hissed from the radiator, I paced and fought back all the nasty things I wanted to say to the U-Haul guy who assigned me the truck. Beads of sweat quickly evaporated in the 115 degree temperature and I was miserable. I spun around to look for shade and noticed a water fountain. An answer to prayer? I looked in the cab for a container and found none. I checked the trash bins, but they were recently emptied. Then it hit me, I had no way to carry water.

I was nursing my despair on the curbside when an older couple drove into the parking spot next to my truck. Seeing my distress, the gentleman came over and asked if I needed help.

I started to explain my drama, how I was peacefully driving down the freeway when the warning lights went off and then and then… I paused. I realized that the gentleman’s eyes had glazed. I quickly responded, “Yes, sir, I need help.”

He walked back to his car and returned with a gallon of water. “You know ma’am, you should always travel with water.” I nodded and thought of dad. This was a lesson I would never forget.
The couple disappeared for a few minutes and then returned to their car. Before leaving, the elderly gentleman explained what I needed to do after the steam subsided and wished me well. I thanked him profusely for his help and especially for the gallon of water.

I thought of this roadside encounter as I watched the news this morning. With all the chaos and noise that surrounds us, it is easy to forget the goodness of people. I’ve often wondered about the kind Black gentleman who came to my aid that summer day. Could he have been an angel?

Picture©Gwen Plano 2020

About Gwen Plano

Gwen M. Plano, aka Gwendolyn M. Plano, grew up in Southern California and spent most of her professional life in higher education. She taught and served as an administrator in colleges in Japan, New York, Connecticut, and California. Gwen’s academic background is in theology and counseling. Recently retired, she now lives in the Midwest with her husband and enjoys writing and travel.

Gwen’s first book is an acclaimed memoir, Letting Go into Perfect Love. Her second book, The Contract between heaven and earth, is a thriller fiction novel, co-authored by John W. Howell. It has received multiple awards and is an Amazon Best Seller. The Choice, the unexpected heroes is the sequel to The Contract. It is also a thriller, involving the attempt of an unfriendly nation to take over the world. The third book in the series, The Culmination, a new beginning is an action-packed military thriller that spans the globe and involves multiple Heads of State and the threat of World War III. Only love can change the fate of humanity.

When Gwen is not writing, she out and about in the beautiful Ozark mountains which she now calls home.

Books by Gwen Plano

One of the recent reviews of Culmination

Mae Clair 5.0 out of 5 stars A Political Thriller with Strong Characters  Reviewed in the United States on January 16, 2021

Book three in a series, The Culmination reads easily as a standalone novel. A political thriller, that addresses denuclearization, tensions in the Middle East, and the fate of refugees, much of the story echoes current headlines. The plot is complex involving multiple heads of state, along with the strategical give and take of political maneuvering on a global level. The author clearly put an extensive amount of research into this book, and it shows. Adrenalin-fueled scenes alter with more cerebral moments, and even a few romantic interludes.

I especially loved the evolution of the relationship between the two central characters, Margaret Adler, VP of the United States and Ivan Smirnov, acting President of Russia. During the course of the novel those titles change, and we learn more about each, including richly developed backgrounds. I was thoroughly invested in the difficulties Margaret and Ivan faced, both on personal and political levels. Their scenes together were among my favorites of the book. There’s also a young refugee child who factors into the story and who stole my heart.

A unique combination of character-driven and plot-driven fiction, I recommend this compelling tale to readers who enjoy strong character development and complexly-plotted intrigue.

Read the reviews and buy the books: : Amazon UKand Amazon US – follow Gwen : Goodreads –website:Gwen PlanoTwitter: @gmplano


Thanks for dropping in today and I know Gwen would love your feedback … Sally


Head over to find out how to participate: Posts from Your Archives 2021

60 thoughts on “Smorgasbord Posts from Your Archives 2021 – #Pot Luck – #Kindness – A Gallon of Water by Gwen M. Plano

  1. What a wonderful story. Somehow it sounds like a very good remake for a western, a trek into a new world. For my imagination it would be a traditional American plot. Only the elderly couple should have been a well-styled modern cowboy. Lol
    Thank you for resharing this wonderful story! Made my day! Michael

    Liked by 2 people

  2. I’ve made that drive up I-5 from Los Angeles to San Francisco or vice versa a few times. That is not a place one wants to get stuck. I spent the night in Bakersfield once. The motel was completely full, so I could not switch rooms, and my air conditioner was broken. Why not just open the window? Probably because it was still 90 degrees out.🤣 What a miserable night!

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Pingback: Smorgasbord Blog Magazine Weekly Round Up..- February 28th – March 6th – Pretty Woman, Shortstories, Poetry, Book Reviews, Food and Funnies. | Smorgasbord Blog Magazine

  4. I think the angel knew what you were thinking, Gwen! She carried a message from your dad and brought you the gallon of water! Angels appear to us in many forms, sometimes in disguise as a human. Thank you so much for sharing this experience!

    Liked by 1 person

I would be delighted to receive your feedback (by commenting, you agree to Wordpress collecting your name, email address and URL) Thanks Sally

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