She was upset. I did what I could.
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Cycling up Ecclesall Road in Sheffield I see a lady sitting on the pavement with her bags, crying. I stop to see if I can help.
She was begging, and crying, started telling me about how she’d been dropped off there, didn’t know where she was … she was in her thirties, maybe forties, looked like she was sleeping rough, or certainly vulnerably.
I asked her if I could get her anything. She said a drink, orange, so I cycled up to the Subway sandwich place and ordered a sandwich for me and a bottle of orange for her. It came to £5 exactly.
I went back to her and gave her the drink. She was still upset, I tried to talk to her about getting help, women’s refuges, I’m sure they have them, she said she was from Rotherham, and needed money to get back. I didn’t entirely believe her, but she said she needed 25p, a gave her a few coins from my pocket.
I felt powerless. What could I do? Give her a new life? A drink, a few coins, a kind ear, some reassuring words, that’s pretty much all I had. But at least she knew someone cared, and she was grateful for the drink.
Cycling off, after wishing her well, and saying a short prayer for her, I feel like there’s no way I can accept a £5 reward for this. It doesn’t even feel right to eat the sandwich, although I’d offered her that as well.
Then I thought to give the £5 to a women’s refuge in Rotherham, if I can find one, EM can you do that please? And let me know where it is so if I see the lady again I can tell her?