Lunch with the homeless lady

Rosie the Riveter

Rosie the Riveter

On my drive home from photographing two friends who are celebrating their wedding engagement I noticed a woman working a median strip near my house.

Her cardboard sign announced her homeless condition.

The logistics of the intersection made it prudent to park, and to approach her on foot. I gave her my customary five-dollar offering.

A brief conversation convinced me that she was not stoned or crazy, and when I asked she told me she had not eaten. It was 3:30 p.m. I invited her to lunch, and she accepted.

We walked to a nearby restaurant that is a bit pricey for my tastes, but I was, hopefully, creating some karma. I need all the good karma I can get. She loved her milkshake. It was topped with whipped cream. She did not leave a drop of it.

She was consistently cheerful and optimistic during our conversation. One of her current goals is to buy her son a birthday cake. He likes chocolate. Anything chocolate. She has three children.

The only physical marker that she might be homeless was dirty fingernails. She also needed help from a good dentist.

The world is screwed up, and many of us work for the people who make it that way. We do it in a mad quest for personal safety. There is no safety in a screwed up world. Each of us, you and I, have to take a stand for kindness and justice.

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