It soon became clear why: The good Samaritan was Uruguay president, Jose Mujica.

After a dozen of cars passed Acosta by, he stood with his thumb out along a stretch of road in southwest Uruguay.

“I didn’t immediately recognise the occupants of the car that finally pulled over and agreed to give me a lift, but something about the woman inside seemed vaguely familiar. After I climbed into the car, I was saying to myself, I know this woman from somewhere,” Acosta said, referring to the president’s wife, First Lady Lucia Topolansky.

“I couldn’t believe that the president was giving me a ride!” said Acosta. He shared his tale on Facebook and for good measure, posted a couple of cellphone pictures.

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