Day 40

I met Elsbeth today in the park and we chatted a while. She invited me to help her this evening at the soup kitchen her church does. I really wasn't sure I wanted to do this, lots of strangers and all, but she has persuasive ways that one.

So I wrapped up warmly and met her at the bridge where many of the local homeless gather. We were joined by a minibus load of youngsters from her church and served hot bowls of soup and bread to the locals. There was no evangelistic agenda, just soup, smiles and happy chatter. I like that.

I struck up a conversation with an old fellow. Actually he wasn't that old, just weather worn. I asked him why he slept rough. Turns out he had had it all: 2.4 children, great house, high profile City job, and just walked away from it all because he couldn't face the responsibility and stress any more. I know the feeling.

Lucky for me I still see the kids and have some hope of redeeming myself, but this guy will be found one day frozen and alone in the gutter.

I didn't know what to say so told him my name and where I lived and said to contact me if he needed anything.

Probably not the wisest or safest move but what have I got to lose?