On Monday I was out in the car which is really unusual for me. Even more unusually, I had my youngest son with me. And I ran out of gas in the left turn lane of a busy intersection. I certainly don't speak enough Spanish to fix the problem.
But this is Mexico and after some honking right at first, everyone figured out there was a problem and got around me except for the man who was stuck behind me. Instead of going around me, he got out of his car to help because he'd figured out I wasn't local. He rounded up a few people to help push the car to the side of the road, then he dealt with the insurance so they'd bring gas to me (sadly, I was right next to a gas station, but it wasn't open yet). Then my phone died (this is why I don't drive places- I can't get into as much trouble on foot) so he left his extra cell phone with me so I could call someone if no one was showing up with gas. He ran off to the test he was late for after that.
A man showed up with 5 liters of gas about 30 minutes later and sent me on my way. What should have been a horrible experience (and it wasn't fun no matter what) turned out to be really rather positive. That's happened to us over and over again as we've been living in other countries. I know the negative stereotypes of Muslims and Mexicans all too well, but our experiences with them have never matched up with what so many Americans think about them.