I woke up this morning and my first thought was, “I’m no longer dizzy and my vision is less blurry. I’m getting better.” The second was, “I’m so hungry.”
I passed out after taking my second Gabapentin pill last night. I’d only eaten a bag of popcorn and a 1/4 box of movie-size Milk Duds after getting home at 5:30 p.m.
So, during my commute, I stopped and bought a fruit salad for $5.25. Normally, the price would’ve deterred me but I was hungry. I placed it in a plastic bag holding the candy for work and continued on my way.
At 50th Street on the number one train, a frail, black woman with ashy skin got on. She said, “Excuse me everyone. Im homeless but I’m lucky enough to have a place to lay my head tonight. But, I’m so hungry. If anyone could spare any food I’d appreciate it.”
I reached into my bag and pulled out two one dollar bills. I stuck them out as she passed me. She said, “No miss, do you have any food.”
I looked down at my fruit salad and paused. After the woman took a KIND bar from the man next to me, I handed her my fruit salad. She sat down and inhaled both. I realized I’ve never known hunger that woman and I was grateful.
I thought that was the high point of my day. Then, I got to my desk and noticed someone had placed Eyewitness News stickers on the hard hat given to by a co-worker. He’d heard me say a note from the NYU Concussion Center suggested I wear one for a couple of weeks as protection after my injury. So, he dug one up and other co-workers customized it to make it special.
I looked at the hard hat and thought about how such a simple gift brought a smile to my face. Seconds later, I thought about the woman from the train again. I hoped she knew the simple joys of life and not just the struggle to survive. If not, I hope the small gifts of food she received in the morning at least made today easier.
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