Seniors have been encouraged to stay indoors during this pandemic so they don't expose themselves to the virus, but one Lake San Marcos man couldn't stay inside if it meant breaking a tradition he has shared with his love for almost two decades.
Real estate agent Richard Farmer met 93-year-old Mike Cain last Tuesday hitchhiking on the side of the road near his retirement center in Lake San Marcos.
"I paused and I was like, 'Is that guy hitchhiking?' So, I made a U-turn, immediately went back and asked him if he was OK," Farmer said.
It turns out, Cain was trying to go to the 99 Cents Only store, which was about 1.5 miles away from where he lived, to buy Hershey's chocolate bars for the love of his life, Do Jerman.
Cain has been eating a chocolate bar with Jerman almost every night for almost twenty years and wasn't about to stop now.
"We don't eat the whole bar – just a couple pieces," Cain said.
News from across California
Farmer and Cain hit it off, and Cain later called up Farmer to ask if he could take him grocery shopping.
"He's very unique," Cain said of Farmer. "I've gotten rides before like that, but they take me and drop me off. But that Rich – he does it 100%."
It's an unlikely friendship, but Farmer says there was just something about Cain that drew him in.
"I was amazed. I'm like, 'This guy must really be in love with this gal,'" Farmer said.
At the drop-off, Farmer got to meet Cain's girl.
"He can go wherever he wants to go; I probably have to send the police after him," Jerman said when she found out how far Cain was going to walk to get her chocolate.
The couple said they're touched by Farmer's generosity.
"There aren't that many people like Rich in the world," Cain said.