The world should be full of love, and full of people unconditionally give and receive, no matter what journey you are taking! You should be grateful for being the one who is able to give, because you will never know when you would become the one who needs help.
Last week when I was walking alone along Calle Mayor in Madrid, I saw a young guy sitting on the ground so desperately begging for money. I walked past him 3 times and he was still sitting there, so I took the courage to approach him and asked why did he need to beg for money.
He then told me his story: His name is Paulo, a young Portuguese traveler who is traveling for the first time. He never left Portugal before, so he has absolutely no experience of traveling. A few days ago when he was camping in a park with some other travelers, all their backpacks were stolen because they put them outside the tent. Now he has nothing except his small bag and no extra sets of clothes. And he is gathering money to go to Barcelona to get back his passport and claim the insurance. He said he worked as a waiter in a restaurant in Plaza Mayor (the biggest square in Madrid), for 3 days and 10 hours each day, the boss only gave him 15 euros in total. Are you kidding me? It is absolutely a ripped off!! People could be so merciless when it comes to money issue. That is why he decided to just beg on the street, probably he could get more than 5 euros a day.
He has not eaten well for days, so I offered him to come to my friends’ home and I can cook something for him. As I was also hosted by a Couchsurfer couple, I could not simply invite him to stay without my hosts’ consensus. Paulo didn’t know about Couchsurfing, so I helped him to set up an account that he can start finding hosts instead of sleeping on the street or paying 15 euros (all that he has begged) to sleep on a hostel bed for one night. And I also sent him to a Couchsurfing meeting so that he could meet somebody who might be able to host him. And finally I gave him a few coins to buy food.
Shits happen when we travel, but I believe when every fellow travelers could help each other out when storms come, it makes you realize that it is not a solo journey!!! We are experiencing humanity when we wander across the world.
Doing at least one good thing each day can make your whole day full of happiness. Why don’t we try to give our helping hands to anyone who needs help. Money cannot solve all the problems, but LOVE can at least break the walls!
Do you have any experience helping a stranger? Share what you have learnt from such experiences!
Madrid, Madrid, Spain