Thursday, July 05, 2012

Heat Wave

Thunder is crashing outside, which may mean a break in the 100+ degree weather we've had in Chicago over the past week (with a few 90°exceptions). The heat brought with it a vision I haven't been able to escape from.

Most of our street people, savvy survivors that they are, have been taking full advantage of the roasting temperature to wheedle some extra "spare change" from wilted tourists. But yesterday I passed one woman who wasn't playing the game. She wasn't on a well-trafficked corner. She didn't even have a paper cup to shake. She just sat in the shade of an office building, dressed in layer upon layer of colorless clothing, one hand on a wire cart overflowing what I presume were her most treasured possessions. She was an older woman, someone I had not seen downtown before, and her face was a picture of sorrow and resignation.

I still wish I had had something, above all a bottle of ice water, to give her, just to make sure she lasted the day.


catholic traveller said...

Such a sad picture. I try to remember to carry such items for just that purpose, but often I forget. Then I run into an opportunity like that and I feel bad.

Sr Anne Flanagan said...

I usually have a granola bar or something with me, but not yesterday. And I was a bit caught off guard with her: not the "typical" place to find someone so needy; so far from any quick assistance. I've been praying for her since yesterday.

Anonymous said...

God has already read your hearts and He will provide.