By Cheryl Ryan
I only saw him from behind as he headed slowly back up the median to the start of a long line of cars. Before he even turned around I dug through my purse, pulled out some money, folded it and waited for his return.
As he began to make his way towards my car — I was probably 7th in line – I was surprised that driver after driver began rolling down their window and handing him cash. They not only handed him money but many chatted a bit. As he got closer his blond dreadlocks and sunbathed face came into focus. His sign read ‘broke, hungry, and too honest to steal’. I rolled down my window handed him some money and asked “What is it about you that makes everybody want to give you money?” He smiled through clear blue eyes and said, “I hope it’s because I look honest.”
The thing is, I never even saw his face before I knew I was going to give him money. I’ve watched countless people walk his very path while drivers gave nothing and looked uncomfortably in the other direction.
I couldn’t help but wonder what it was about this person that compelled one after another to give without hesitation. There was undeniably something special about him. But what was it? Was it an aura? If not an aura, what?
This isn’t the first time I’ve been inexplicably drawn to someone, but it doesn’t happen often. How a homeless man could evoke such compassion from so many really moved me.
Have you had any experiences like this?