barren during the summer and only a handful of students were living in the circle of dorms that surrounded the athletic center and adjacent track and soccer fields.
I just finished working out. My muscles twitching and the sweat causing my shirt sleeves to stick to my arms. As I cooled down I gently laid in the grass and allowed the sun to wash over me. Out of the corner of my eye I noticed a figure approaching.
He appeared in his forties. Wearing old tattered shorts and a t-shirt. His facial hair overgrown and unkempt in distinct contrast to his balding head. He walked without particular haste or direction. His eyes glassy. His gait unsteady.
I may have noticed the distinct odor of alcohol. Or maybe it was my preconceived notion of the homeless people in the area. The mind is highly suggestible.
Hey buddy...can you help me out?
I paused, calculating...How about something to eat?
He nodded and I beckoned him to follow. We walked down the hill to a convenience store. I only had a few dollars. We agreed on a turkey sandwich and a few drinks. I handed him the change at the register.
And then we walked back to the field and sat down. I unwrapped the turkey sandwich...giving him one half and keeping the other for myself.
We ate. Silently. Enjoying the summer day. The sweaty college student and the unkempt homeless man. We exchanged some pleasantries. Nothing too deep. Eventually he finished...thanked me...and walked off.
Years have since passed and I am a doctor. Now I spend most of my day "helping" people. But for some reason it doesn't feel quite the same.
It was like something magical happened that day.
And for a moment I felt a sense of oneness.
I find it so hard to recapture those feelings nowadays.