I went to the ATM today which is in a little area before going into the bank. This bank doesn’t have a drive-up ATM so I usually just walk in.
As I was going in an older man held the door open for me and I encouraged him to go first. His friend came a minute or so later and the two of them were quite the pair trying to figure out how to get the ATM card into the slot. I asked them if I could help, and they handed over the card. I inserted it correctly and explained that this is the slowest ATM in Oshkosh.
The first man finished his transaction and I told his friend to go next. He seemed surprised, but I said the sooner he got done the sooner they could get into their nice warm car and they agreed. I had to help the second man and eventually they completed their banking.
The first man turned to leave but he hesitated before starting to speak.
“Could I hold your hand,” he whispered in a raspy voice. “There aren’t very many nice people in this world.”
I offered my hand and he caressed it and thanked me several times for being so sweet to an old man. I told him that I’m an old woman and we all have to stick together.
His friend thanked me again for helping them and they headed out to their car.
The scent of unwashed bodies and clothes filled the small, window-less space. From their clothing and the piles in the battered car, I think they were homeless and living in that car in these bitter temperatures.
It took nothing for me to kind, yet it made me sad to think that I was perhaps the one person who had shown them kindness in a long time.
I am blessed with all we have and, even when I was at my lowest taking care of two kids and my late husband, I was never homeless. I need to add these two to my prayer list and drop some food off at our little Hope Fridge. I don’t do that often enough.
I wasn’t going to go to the bank today but I am glad I did.