I was in the middle of writing a paper presentation when I remembered something I witnessed this weekend while stuck in a traffic jam and I think this deserves to be shared here
In Jakarta, the sight of beggars asking for money at traffic jams are a common sight. You can always see them line up every day. Some are even “regulars”, like clock work appearing at a same hour. People believe that some kind of mafia is involved in putting these beggars on the street and so usually, a lot of people ignore them.
Yesterday, I came across a mother-child beggar during a traffic jam. I also noticed, across the street, a young boy (about 12 year old maybe) selling some kind of fried food. The mother then waved and ordered something for the child. He then crossed the street carrying something and gave them the food. What happened next made me want to cry.
The mother started to give the boy some money from her cup to pay for the food, but you know what the boy did? He just waved off the money and crossed back to his “pikulan”, and moved on, walking, continuing his selling. The mother child beggar then proceeded to have their simple meal.
The whole episode made me ashamed of myself. There I was, in my nice car, AC on, songs on the CD, silently complaining about the traffic while this boy, who obviously does not make a lot of money selling cheap fried food, sacrifice a portion of his profit for… a mother-child beggar (who might not even be mother and child?). I wanted to shout out to the boy and pay for the food he gave the beggar but he was quick and nimble on his feet and he quickly faded from my view.
So I slowly moved on too, all the while feeling embarrassed, because sometimes I think too much when giving to the needy when there this young boy who didn’t think twice about giving free food to the needy.
Moral of the story… if you want to give, then GIVE! Don’t overthink your actions. Do what your heart tells you to do.
I do pray that the young boy sold out all his food that day and has enough for his family to eat a decent meal.
Thanks for reading.