Tuesday, January 26, 2010


I'm not your typical mall shopper.  In fact, I try to avoid going to the mall if I can.  However, tonight I needed to make a stop at the book store there to pick up a gift. 

After parking my car  (and surprisingly I was able to find a parking place pretty quickly), I got out of the car and was just locking the doors when I was approached by a woman who looked to be between 30 - 40 years old.  She was wearing a long t-shirt, but it didn't register at the time that she did not have a coat on.  She exclaimed, "Excuse me!"

I really just wanted to ignore her and walk to the mall entrance, but I stopped and waited for her to get closer to me.  She then asked me for a few dollars so that she could put gas in her truck.

The cynical me is sure that she is making her way across the mall's vast parking lot asking everyone for money and that she probably doesnt need it for gas. In fact, this may be her "full time"job.

The merciful me feels sorry for her and wonders what I would do if I were stuck at a mall with no gas in my vehicle.  It wonders what the back story is.   Is she homeless?  Does she have food to eat?  Did she lose her job or have no means of support?

The cycnical me won over as I told her that I had no extra money to give her before I walked away.

I then wondered if she watched me walk into the book store doors and see me buy $85 worth of books ( when my purpose was to buy a $15 gift).

So much for my mercy.

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