Humbling experiences present in many forms. As do opportunities to Pay It Forward Friday (PIFF).
Since my new washer/dryer hasn’t been delivered yet, I sat waiting on my laundry to dry at the public laundromat. This is not only an activity I detest more than anything…please, let me clean the toilets or mow or anything!…but in a place that gives me the complete creeps.
As I child, I spent many a Saturday morning at the public laundromat washing clothes with my Momma. Washing our clothes with everybody else’s. Bleech!!! Still makes me shudder.
I am approached by an obviously homeless man.
He wants to know if I can spare a few dollars for some breakfast. I look at my change and I only have a buck thirty-five. I give it to him and he thanks me profusely.
I offer him what’s left of my powdered donuts and he takes them after an assurance that I don’t want them. He sits down in the row of chairs beside me and eats.
He tells me that his name is Sir Paul. He says, like Paul McCartney, but he’s not him. And flashes me a grin.
No kidding. He’s black as night except for his powdered donut smile.
He says he had a dog, but he ran away. And he says he is a Vietnam Vet. His faded army jacket definitely looks authentic.
I have to go out to the truck to get another quarter for the dryer and notice the tire on his bicycle is flat.
Remembering what my Gpaw, the artist, always said about not giving money to beggars, but that it’s ok to support the arts. I ask him if he has a talent or skill. He says he can sing. So I ask him to break me off a piece of something. He obliges and fills the laundry with a stunning rendition of “Yesterday,” by The Beetles.
Even the old Latino lady sitting near the window perks up to listen.
He gets up and takes a bow. And turns towards the door. I asked him to stay put for just a second while I get something from the truck.
I return with a 20.00 and hand it to him and thank him for the performance. He tries to push it away and says he did it for free. But I remind him his bike tire needs replacing and West Side Cycles is just down the street. So he takes the money and thanks me profusely again before he leaves.
Once home, I pull out the two Weekly Grand lottery tickets that I bought at the convenience store with the donuts.
Jose’ scratches his. Loser. I’m on the phone and absentmindedly only scratch half of mine. Jose’ finishes it for me. And guess what?! It’s a $20.00 winner! Yup! Yup!
You get what you give!
Pay It Forward Friday!
This stuff just writes itself.
Your VERY best friend in the whole wide world