A little after 5 p.m. on Friday, a woman in an older Toyota station wagon was stalled in a line of traffic at the intersection of Highway 12 and West Napa Street.
The light was red, there were cars behind her, but no one in front of her, and a motorcycle rider, in full leathers and a full-face helmet – his bright red bike parked on the edge of the traffic island – was shoving on the back of her car for all his might. It wouldn’t budge. The temperature was in the 80s and inside that leather suit it must have felt like 100. Twice he went up to the driver and conferred, presumably to ensure the vehicle wasn’t in park or had the brake on.
Twice he was stymied. The car wouldn’t budge.
Finally, just as the light turned green, allowing eastbound traffic onto West Napa, something gave, the car was freed, and the motorcyclist single-handedly pushed the stalled Toyota all the way through the intersection and into the adjacent Staples parking lot.
It was, perhaps, a modest-sized rescue, but no less a noble one, and it did not appear that anyone got the rider’s name. He deserves our thanks, not just for coming to the aid of someone in distress, but because his action reminded everyone watching what is special about Sonoma. Rarely a month goes by without a reader reporting a similar experience.