Today I was eating at a local restaurant when a young woman in her early twenties sat on a bench outside the window. She had several suitcases and other stuff. She held a small neatly printed sign that read, “Pregnant and trying to get home to Seattle.” After a few minutes as people passed they put dollar bills in a cup she had next to her. She thanked each one. Some stopped to talk with her.
Thinking she may be hungry I asked the waiter to take her a menu. I finished my lunch just as he took her the food and drink she’d ordered. I could tell she was asking him who bought her lunch but I’d asked him to say it was an anonymous friend.
As I left the restaurant she was enjoying the meal. I smiled at her and she smiled back. As I passed I put $5 in her cup. She reached up touched my arm and said,”Thank you so much.” “You are welcome please take care of yourself,” I said. She said, “I am. I’m going back home to people who care.”
Buying food for the young woman felt great. Giving her money also felt good. But the most fulfilling part was sharing an intimate heart-moment in conversation and that gentle touch. It made my soul sing and it will each time I think of her and our exchange.