This morning I spent 40 Euros in our local delicatessen. Yesterday I saw a man eating bread from a dustbin. I know that this is not unique to Athens and that probably makes it even worse. How can we be living in this modern world where we can send our thoughts in 140 characters or fewer across the ether but we can’t provide a decent level of food and shelter for everyone.
Yesterday I’d given the last of my change to the elderly lady who sits on the corner. I’ve never seen her face because she sits with her head bent over her chest. When I put the coins in her hand she grasps it for a few moments and sometimes I wonder if it’s the contact that she needs more than the money. When I saw the man eating from the bin I turned away, partly because I was shocked but partly because I didn’t want him to see my shock, to feel worse in some way. Although when you’ve reached the level of getting lunch from the rubbish you probably couldn’t care less what some middle-class do-gooder thinks. I wish now that I’d gone to the baker and bought him a loaf.