When I left the United States, I left as a minimalist with less that 200 hundred items in my entire life. I was very proud of myself and enjoying the freedom from the trappings of the consumer culture we’ve built our lives around. In no way am I making a statement that there is anything inherently wrong with having material possessions. Leaving my old life behind I now discovered that (I) was giving my personal things way too much power in the pursuit of more, better, bigger, nicer, prettier, I realize that the things that I was forsaking were the things I was trying to get closer to. Experiencing a different culture, becoming a better observer of the world around me I’ve come to appreciate my time, my health, my friendships, passions, personal growths and my desire to contribute to the world, leaving it a better place then when I was born.
Today was a day of observation and action, it was one of those great stories, I came upon a child of God, he was walking along the road, his life on a cart, baggy pants, vile jacket with oil stains and the stune coming of this child of God’s body was among some of the raunchiest smells I have ever crossed as a ragpicker. The sun had gone down, traffic had filled the streets, a beautiful light snow was coming down and there was not a soul that was going to help this poor old gentleman who just stumbled upon a patch of ice, unsuccessfully failing to render any abilities to hold off the landslide of his prized possessions as they projectiled down the wet cold hard muddy embankment of a road destined for travelers that had no patients for a homeless man trying to pick up his material belongings.
I was walking with Miri and Oksana coming back from the store when we saw this misfortune as we passed I looked at Oksana and handed her the bags of materials we had purchased and told her to continue to home but I had to help this man. He was old, tired, frustrated and desperate to get his things out of the puddles of water and snow. With every opportunity he attempted to reach down and grab a possession his cart would slide forward sending more materials to the ground. He was so preoccupied with saving his cardboard and books he never saw me go behind him and gather up what I could in my arms. I came up to his side pulled on the rope he had secured his life with and we shared a smile together. He continued to maneuver his materials while I reached down grabbed 5 books that were strewn about lying like dead soldiers in puddles of mud soaking up the water and curling the pages. I could only imagine he must have cherished these books more than anything else in life to keep them with him. My heart broke as I did the best job to give the authors and books some dignity back, as I handed then to a man I will never get to know, probably never see again, as we parted I patted him on the back, he glanced up from a hunched position, his eyes sunken back into his sockets with blackened cheek bones, I smiled he could not even retort all I saw was amazement on his face, as a horn started to blow indicating that the driver was impatient and wanted to get up the embankment as quickly as possible and we were preventing him from his destination.
I put my arm around Oksana and grabbed Miri’s hand walking off I am hoping in my heart that they might have witnessed a deed that will live on in their minds for the future.
God you work in mysterious ways but I thank you every time you give me an opportunity to practice what I believe you have put me here for.
Good night everyone thank you for taking the time out of your life to look at and possibly read some of the materials I share.