People have a way of shocking you.
I just read an article about the Pope being given a motorcycle from Harley Davidson. Now, of course this is the hip. ex-bouncer pontiff who’s shaking things up in the Catholic Church but on a Harley?? Totally unexpected. Gives new meaning to the phrase Holy Roller. Shows you can never make assumptions.
Lately, I had a chance to be shocked by my expectations of what I assume people to be.
I’d just finished an amazing yoga class and was still filled with bliss when I reached into my bag and realized -my wallet was gone.
At first, I was in denial: sure that my wallet must be SOMEWHERE in the mix of sweaty yoga clothes, mats and water bottles. Everyone helped me look and look but finally I had to realize it was gone.
Lucky for me, my phone was in my jacket so I was able to call a friend to arrange to get my house keys so thought I’d head home and figure it all out
I got on the phone, explaining to my friend that I’d hop on the bus and be home in 15 minutes. Then, I realized and exclaimed “SHIT -I don’t have my wallet so I don’t have even $2 for the bus!”.
I started to get swept in by all of the judgement and negative emotions of being robbed and started to really get in a funk and hate the world-and certainly SF for being the kind of place where you’re shit is never safe and where you always have to watch your back.
Then, someone shocked me.
A young homeless guy was sitting at the coffee shop outside of my yoga studio. He wasn’t one of those meth-heads that we are so used to seeing (and who we know not to get very close to.) This guy was a young Asian dude, a little smelly and dirty, but who looked a little bit like Keanu Reeves after a bender.
He reached into his pocket and pulled out two crumpled dollar bills and handed them to me.
My immediate reaction was to say no because HOW can I take money from a homeless guy?!?!?!
But, then, the guy looked me in the eyes and said “It would really make me feel good if I could give you this money and help you out.”
It’s one of those ethical dilemmas you find yourself in living in San Francisco. Where things aren’t as they seem and your perceived ideas of what people should look and act like is totally wrong.
That’s the beauty of this city-it turns prejudices upside down and shows you beauty in the grimiest of places.
So, I accepted his $2 and later left money in the coffee shop where he frequents so he has free food and drink for a little while.
As for the Pope and his new Harley?
He sold the Harley at an auction in France for $327,000. Then he donated the money to a local soup kitchen and homeless shelter.
Nothing shocks me anymore….