Monday, August 21, 2006

The passenger

His blue shirt was brand new, worn for the first time, with every crease in its prisitine condition. He was immaculately dressed in smart jeans and his new shirt as the middle-aged man boarded the bus and stood in the aisle, not far from where I was sitting.

He was in my direct line of sight, so when I turned my head from looking out of the window, my heart gave a sudden painful lurch as I realised that my fellow passenger, so obviously on his way to work, would be spending his day cleaning car windscreens at some set of traffic lights in the centre of Rome. He had gone to so much trouble to look good, even for such a menial task that most of his customers wouldn't have spared him a second glance. I felt sad. He had so much self-respect that, even if he would be ignored by the majority, he would still do his best.

How many people do I see but not see in the course of my daily life? Do I truly see the newsagent, postman, refuse collector, street cleaner and the others who go to make my life comfortable or do I take them for granted? Who are these people? What are their own joys and sorrows, successes and failures?

Yet God has counted every hair on their heads also, not just on my own.

God bless,

Sr. Janet