It’s cold. In the mornings and nights it’s below zero (Celsius) or around it. Every Tuesday and Thursday’s when I walk home from class around 7pm, I walk past the same homeless man. He is always in the same spot, sitting on a sleeping bag, with a small sign and his hands tucked away in his coat or between his legs. He doesn’t speak or beg as passers go by. There are other beggars in town who hang around the supermarket, shaking their coin cups as people enter and leave. While I mostly find them annoying, I sometimes give them my spare change. Now, this man, the one I walk past, sits there, clearly uncomfortable and cold, not asking, but still begging, made me want to do something nice for him. I noticed he never wore gloves. So, last week I bought him a pair; nothing special, a simple pair, the same and only pair I use.
Fast forward to this week. It’s cold tonight, but not as cold as it usually is. As I walk home I see my man in the distance, as I got closer I noticed he wasn’t wearing anything on his hands, yet trying to keep his hands warm by hiding them inside his coat. Now I can’t imagine why he wouldn’t use the gloves, or why he would get rid of them (if he did). It doesn’t make sense to me because he was still in discomfort. I don’t know if he traded them for something else or gave them to somebody else. I just don’t understand. Maybe, somebody else needed them more.