Story from the Street by Clodagh Burrows

“Can I buy you a drink?”, I asked. The man responded from under his long wet locks, looking up from his sodden sleeping bag. “Yes please, a tea, with milk and sugar”. From having his first sip from this warm, sweet, cup of comfort, he felt he wanted to open up. “I am very grateful and thank you”. He continued, “Not a lot of people stop or have a smile for me, you have made my day”. I had time to spare and an umbrella over me. I wanted to hear his story. “How did you get here, on the streets?'' I asked. His eyes looked vacant and emotionless. He answered with a low, nervous tone. “I lost my job, my daughter, my partner, everything”. “A year ago, today, my world collapsed”. These words echo around many of our streets today. 

I sensed fear and pain in his whole demeanour. I reassured him “when I see you around again, I shall buy you a cuppa and stop for a chat”. He attempted a little smile, a glimmer shone in his eyes and he replied “thanks, have a lovely day and God Bless”. I hope one day this man will be in a position to buy someone a drink. I hope he continues chasing his dreams, keeping himself well and one day be reunited with this family. He said his daughter was his strength, to get him out of this dark spiral. 

Give a smile, a ‘hello’ or a few words along the way. There are people who are desperately in need of these very basic things, in our world today. 

The effects of a global pandemic are real and lots of people have hit low ebbs. Reach out to those less fortunate and you too could make someone’s day.

Published in Issue #14

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