Air Support

Last week, we posted a call from Winnie Biscet asking for folks to write letters to her imprisoned father, Dr. Oscar Elias Biscet, which, in turn, she would forward to her father on Father’s Day. Many of you penned and sent your kind words of support and you may recall there was one letter in particular, from reader Matthew H, that I posted in its entirety.
I was so moved by the beauty of the letter, by its honesty and openness and optimism, that after posting it I emailed Matthew and thanked him. I told him I had been moved to tears and mentioned that I and my wife and Ziva would be in DC – his neck of the woods – this week as we had been invited to the White House. I asked if he knew of a reasonably priced hotel where we could lay our heads for the night. Matthew’s response blew me away.
No need to rent a couple of rooms at an expensive hotel, he said. No need to worry about Metro stations and taxis and rental cars. Matthew graciously offered us his home. It would be his honor to have us a guests, he said.
Matthew and his wife Cathy not only offered us the hospitality of their homes, but offered to pick us up at the airport, drive us around if we wanted or offered us the use of a car. Dinner at their home, a ride to anywhere in D.C., a ride back to the airport. The whole works. Anything and everything we needed.
I was blown away by their generosity and humbly accepted.
I wont give you the nightmare of the flight out to D.C. in detail, but suffice it to say we were originally to arrive at Ronald Reagan Airport at 8 Pm Tuesday night. We did not make it in until 2 in the morning. And at 2:00 in the morning, Matthew and Cathy were there, waiting for us, carrying a large printout of my Tia Amanda’s eyes which adorn the header of this blog. What incredibly wonderful people.
They drove us to their home at that late hour and had a couple of warm and inviting rooms ready for us. They offered to make us a little something to eat, let us know we could ask for whatever we needed. After a quick tour of their beautiful home, we all sat around the kitchen area chatting until almost 4 in the morning. We would have easily stayed up later, learning much much more about each other, enjoying such wonderful company, but we had to be at the White House no later than 9:15 and reluctantly decided to call it a night.
Two and a half hours later we woke to Matthew and Cathy making us a massive breakfast. Ham, eggs, sausage, bagels, hash browns… and after only two hours sleep! And with a full day of work ahead of them!
I’m grappling with tears here, folks. Because not only did these wonderful folks pick us up in the wee hours of the morning an hour’s drive from their home, not only did they open their home for us with incredible hospitality and generosity, not only did they feed us like a mom would feed a child home from college, but they drove us back into DC and dropped us off right in front of the White House, and once the event was over, picked us up and drove us to the airport for our flight home.
Amazing. Absolutely amazing. Attending an event at the White House is an incredible and memorable honor, but I can say in all honesty and from the very bottom of my heart that having met and spent time with Matthew and Cathy is as much of an honor and, indeed, a great pleasure.
We have discussed on this blog before how we sometimes get frustrated because it seems like no one cares about Cuba and the plight of her people. But right now I can tell you all without qualm or compunction that there are beautiful, honest, caring and generous souls out there like Matthew and Cathy – true Americans in every sense of the word – that truly and wholeheartedly care for the poeple of that little island in the Caribbean shaped like a crocodile.
Matthew and Cathy: a million gracias! for everything. The true beauty of this nation, what makes America great, are folks like you. I love you both and always know that our home is always, always open for you.

4 thoughts on “Air Support”

  1. Val,
    I ran out of tissues man.
    Thank you Matthew and Cathy for being there and for showing the true spirit of our wonderful country to your new friends. This is one more reason I’m so proud to be an American.

  2. Not only did they do all that Val shared in this post, they did it with so much warmth and humility–like staying up half the night to pick up three travel weary strangers from an airport to welcome them into your home as family, is an every day occurance, no big deal. These wonderful people are exactly why America is great, and I treasure these new friends. Matthew and Cathy, thank you, thank you, thank you.

  3. Ditto on the above comments! What a great gesture from two special human beings! Matthew and Cathy have done a true act of kindness … something that is inherent in the people of this great country! We can each make a difference!Thank you for caring! God Bless!!
    I wish you well 🙂 Melek
    “Past the seeker as he prayed came the crippled and the beggar and the beaten. And seeing them…he cried, “Great God, how is it that a loving creator can see such things and yet do nothing about them?”…God said, “I did do something. I made you.” – Sufi Teaching

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