I must have a face that says, “Please feel free to ask me for directions.”
Just in the past week, I’ve been asked for directions on three separate occasions. And they all seem to have an interesting story to tell.
I met the first uncle in the hospital. He said he had just sent his neighbour to hospital on the ambulance and he didn’t know how to go home, coupled with the fact that he didn’t bring his wallet. So I whipped out some money and sent him off in the correct direction.
Then I met another guy on my way to ballet while a torrential rain was pouring. He was trying to get to church, but as I was rushing for my class, I pointed vaguely in the direction that he was supposed to go and mentioned he might like to take a cab instead.
The last man I met just last night on my way home. He was “lost” in a completely different part of town than where he was supposedly staying. And I have a relatively poor sense of direction when it comes to roads because I travel only by the train. He wanted to know which direction to walk in so he could walk home. Again, for some reason I cannot really remember, he didn’t have money on him (he was robbed?). So I whipped out the last bit of money I had in my purse and waved him off to the train station.
Crooks or not, it’s hard to ignore someone who has cornered you with their pitiful story.
Wouldn’t you err on the side of generosity?