Tuesday, June 4, 2013

This World

Pinks and oranges highlighted the rooftop of the strip mall.  The sun was beginning to descend on this part of the first world.  I, too, was clothed in warm colors, a fun dress to show off to my friends.  Nearly late for our regular dinner date, I grabbed a few precious minutes to shop.  My flip flops flapped with purpose down the breezeway to Pier 1.

Three boys hovered by the entrance, one nearly a man, the others just kids.  They had a telling look of loitering about them.  I slowed to a stop and then braced for their approach, my shoes echoing a final clip clop.  Had I removed my dark glasses they would have read my haste, but I tried to stand open-minded.

"Would you like to donate to such and such club, a group serving underprivileged youth?"

"What are you accepting?" I asked with choice words.  Eyeing the canned food at my feet, I considered the market down the way.


Given no time to question, I felt forced to receive a chubby hand and a bright smile.

"Hi, my name's Curt.  Nice to meet you ma'am.  Are you able to help at this time?"

"Why no, no I am not.  I'm sorry.  Not right now.  I have no cash on me."

"There's an ATM over there."  He pointed.  I stared.

Flip, clop.   "No.  Thank you, young man."

A quick turn of the store and I quickly learned they did not have what I hoped to find.  But, I lingered to keep a watchful glance through stacks of wine racks and over seas of glasses and mugs.  The boys were still there and I didn't dare want to deal with them again.

I managed to slip by while another woman in the wings scavenged in her bag to feed them.  Fleeing the scene, I overheard the staff giving notes to his flock.  "Be sure to say underprivileged.  You get more attention that way.  Did you notice how the lady stopped when I did?"

Clip, flop.

No doubt there was a need, this great nation is full of them.  And, it is a necessity to care for our own.  We all have light to shine and time or talent or treasure.  But, right then I decided buying a goat for a girl across the third world feels a hell of a lot better than this.


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