Tag - alms

Young, strong and cap-in-hand

Young, strong and cap-in-hand

It seemed to confront him everywhere he went that day; either en route a location or at the destination . At the ATM, he noticed the absence of the expected queues as he manoeuvered into a suitable parking spot.Two people waited their turns. Parked to the right was a car with its bonnet opened and its owner, a woman, leaning on it. Not part of the money- withdrawing category, it was obvious what had happened to her car. The sparse gathering made it easy to notice the oddity amongst them. A woman – youngish, agile, alert – with a baby strapped to her back. Odd because she seemed to be loitering. Neither coming nor going. Just there, like an indecision. He thought nothing of her as he headed towards an unoccupied machine, but noticed from the periphery of his vision as she suddenly accompanied the man who had just vacated the space he was about to use. Minutes after he was through with his business, the lady appeared again; this time by his side as he made to re -enter his car. The leaning lady by the car was witness as he pointedly ignored the one by his door. By now, he had deduced why she hadn’t quite fit into the scene, why she stood out. And she was bold about it as her fingers, firmly wrapped about the door handle, prevented him from closing the door behind him, requesting (no, demanding) for a minute of his time (in grammatically correct sentences to his observation). ‘I don’t have a minute.’ He told her evenly before shutting the door and kicking the engine to life. There was a church right next to the ATM; how about she approached its members and plead her case? He thought as he slowly reversed onto the road. And as for lady leaner, she could save her disapproving stare for someone who cared. Or better still, proffer help to her fellow woman. At the bakery, the young man who accosted (for want of a better word) him was brash and arrogant about it. ‘Gimme money make I”more

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