The Alms

Ready, Set, Done!
by Ben Huberman
Our ten-minute free-write is back for another round! Tap away on whatever comes to mind, no filters attached. (Feel free to edit later, or just publish as-is).


When my (late) husband health deteriorated with chemotherapy, and he stopped driving, we had to employ a driver to take me around for the outside chores. I could drive, but for safety sake my husband insisted on a driver. When I was out, he would worry. A lone woman in our male oriented society (back home) riddled with bombs, and terrorism wasn’t a safe place anymore.

I would buy fruit from vendors with carts, who sold them at cheaper prices than the fruit shops.

An old man would be sitting under a nearby tree. In front of him was his alms bowl. He never begged. If someone put money in his bowl, he would murmur, “God bless you”, otherwise he remained silent.

He was different from the other beggars who clutch at you as soon as you step down from your car. It made a person feel irritated. At times I didn’t feel like giving them anything.

Finished with my buying I quietly slipped a money note in the old man’s bowl. While I was getting in the car, I saw a teenage boy bend down to the alms bowl, as if to put money in it. Instead he snatched the note I had put in it, and away he ran.

I told my driver to run after the boy, but the old man stopped us. He said, “God never intended that money for me. If He had, it never would have been taken away from me.”

I was astonished at the old man’s calm acceptance.

3 thoughts on “The Alms”

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