Blogging · Me myself and I · Thoughts

I am Nadia…

Well past most people’s bedtime and I am still awake, getting ready for our little weekend getaway. The apartment is filled with the soul warming scent of the spaghetti sauce batch, slowly stirring on the stove.

I am not the bragging kind, but I make the best spaghetti sauce I’ve tasted. Even Mom, who taught me how to make it, doesn’t bother cooking her own. She waits for me to visit, and we make tons of it together.

I spent all afternoon shopping around, gathering everything we needed for our three days out in the woods.

When I got to the liquor store to get a couple of bottles of good Pinot Noir, a woman was sitting by the door. Wearing army-like old clothes, she raised a paper cup my way when I got close to her, gave me a large smile, and asked for any spare change.

I don’t like giving money to homeless people. I don’t want to encourage drug usage or give money that will be used for alcohol. I’d much rather give a larger amount and buy the person a whole lunch instead.

But I was in a bit of a hurry, and the closest grocery store was a good walk away. So I smiled back at the lady, and told her I had no change, but would gladly offer a cigarette if she smoked. (Most homeless people I’ve met do)

Her smile widdened.

That would be lovely, dear!

She pulled a bottle of Pepsi from behind her back. It was obviously given to her not long before our encounter, as I could see water pearling on the plastic. She opened the bottle and took the cigarette I was handing her.

A good Pepsi, a good cigarette, this is a lovely day indeed!

She was very sincere, I could tell. And it felt good to know I could bring a little highlight in her day. I asked if she had fire, which she didn’t. I held my lighter to her and she greeted me with an even wider smile.

What’s your name?

He face lit up, and her smile was so large that I could see she had no lower teeth.

I am Nadia! What’s yours, darling?

I presented myself and stretched out to shake her hand. She thanked me again for the smoke, and I excused myself and left…

 

I don’t write this to brag about being a nice person. I write it, first of all, to remember Nadia. Life is crazy, and though I doubt I’ll forget her, I know I very well might forget her name if I don’t keep it somewhere safe.

I also write it to remind you that, even if a little bit of money, or some goods may help a homeless person you encounter… Genuine human contact is something they lack even more. Try it. Give a smile, or a “Have a nice day”, or be bold and stop for a short talk. You’ll be surprised. I promise you that.

Today I didn’t make Nadia’s day. She made mine!

 

 

5 thoughts on “I am Nadia…

  1. This is really special as you have immortalised Nadia. Due to your writing she would become a part of thousands more people’s lives and would be remembered in their prayers. 😊

    Thank you for sharing 🤗

    Regards,
    Dee Kay

    PS – Have a great getaway in the woods. 😊

    Like

  2. Thank you for sharing. There is a growing problem of homelessness in Cardiff, and the authorities are notably unsympathetic, encouraging people not to give, confiscating bedding, etc. It feels like a very cruel age we are moving into (or are already in), in which those who “fail” (or society fails, more likely) are considered unworthy even of basic compassion.

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  3. I seem to be a target for homeless people. Despite the fact that sometimes I look like one myself (and in an odd way, sort of actually are one a lot of the time). I have many fond memories of these little encounters.
    One (of many) that springs to mind was in downtown LA when I was waiting for others to join me outside a restaurant. I was approached by a guy who gave me a long winded story about his car being locked in a parking lot and needing $75 to get it out. The situation was desperate because he had a new job to report to first thing in the morning and could not do so without the car.
    It was quite a story, with details about the car, about the job and about his life in general – which had, no doubt, taken a turn for the worse.
    At the end of his carefully prepared speech I said to him, “Sorry, buddy, but you and I both know that is total bullshit. But, hey, it was a great story. But it’s not worth seventy five dollars. I’ll give you ten,” which I then presented to him.
    “Oh, wow!” he said, “don’t apologise. Most people just tell me to fuck off!”

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Leave it to you, but I would have said the same thing. Too bad he didn’t spend that creative time making up the story to find a job. But there are real homeless out there and any one of us on fixed income could be there in a minute.

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