The Homeless Man
I was on my way home on Friday and was not in a hurry to get there. All sorts of thoughts had been going in and out of my mind in scattering. Life at home is not what it should be anymore but I try to keep my head up. At least my job is going well and is much better than the one before it. As I said though, it seemed that I just could not focus on one thought as before I knew it- my mind was off in another direction.
Finally my mind stopped at the fact I had not checked my lottery numbers from Wednesday nights draw. Could it be perhaps that the winning number was in my pocket if even only for the $200,000 or perhaps a $100 prize? What would I do with all that money? Well, I don't even have to think about the answer to that question. Invest, spend , give to a person in need and of course have a good time.
Beside me on the seat, while I was thinking about all of this, were seven one dollar bills. The plan for these singles was already slated for my next set of numbers at the chance for riches. Caught up in my own problems, as there is much time to think during the hour long drive, my mind tries to push them back and think of happier things. One such thing is getting my little proto-type finished so it can be tested and shown. Another thing is deciding on which style of lamp I will produce. Then there are the other half finished projects that are waiting in the wings to try and help me forget the boredom and the fact I'm not getting any younger.
Then I pull up to a traffic light in the turn lane. Standing on the concrete median is a homeless man with a cardboard sign. The man is probably five vehicles in front of me and he's just standing there with the sign at his side. The words of someone I know pop into my head about these people who stand at these intersections with their signs. "Oh! Those people are just plain lazy and sorry. If they really wanted a job they could go find one." And so on and so on this person judges.
But I think to myself that it is not fair for me to judge these people. I don't know their stories and what happened to them. All sorts of people are finding themselves out of work and homeless these days. It could happen to anyone of us in the blink of an eye. Bad things happen to good people to you know. Who am I to judge them without knowing the circumstances?
As the light turns green and the traffic begins to move, this man just stands there bothering no one as cars file passed. As my truck rolls up to were he is standing he begins to turn around as I'm rolling down my window. We make eye contact and he sees the folded bills in my hand as my hand comes out the window. My truck is still moving along but slow enough that can take the hand off. He reaches for them almost surprised with his mouth open looking at the bills. From my hand he takes them as I head on my way. My window still down I can hear him hollering back at me "Thank you sir. Thank you very much."
I drive on thinking to myself, "Here I was thinking about my problems and dreaming of winning the lottery. While this fellow is down on his luck and needing a meal and a place to spend the night."
Seven dollars that I just had for lottery tickets to win the big prize was gone. While I was hoping at a chance for millions perhaps this homeless man was only hoping for a dollar.