The cheapskate in me is not going down easy and that’s a fact. Today I was just pleased as punch because I found a new place to park my car that’s about half a dozen blocks from work. $2 for all-day parking! I’ve been riding the bus whenever I can, but sometimes I travel between offices and need the car. Sometimes I’ll spend 10 minutes looking for a spot on the street.

I was still thinking about this great deal when I stopped into Walgreen’s, which is on the route from cheap parking to office. Last time I was there the cashier asked me if I had a loyalty card. I said I didn’t and she used a generic one she had stashed under the register drawer. I saved about 60¢. Today it was a different cashier and he just charged me full price. The generic card was sitting right there and it was all I could do not to complain that I wasn’t getting a discount. Sometimes I wonder: what the hell is wrong with me??

It was such a beautiful day today. Finally! I put in a good day’s work and headed out back to my car. There were people everywhere – including in tanks and shorts, which we haven’t seen here for many moons. Right before I reached the parking oasis, I saw a woman come dashing across the three-lane street. She was light on her feet and moving fast. She dodged a few cars and then, suddenly, she was on the sidewalk right in front of me. She didn’t look like she should be able to move that fast and I must have been staring at her. “Beautiful day,” she said. “Oh, yes!” I agreed. It doesn’t get better than this!”

There was a bus stop there and she sat down on the bench. I put my hand in my pocket, thinking I had slipped a hundred in there earlier but not positive. Yup. “Do you have a minute?” I asked her. “Well, I do till my bus comes!” she answered with a chuckle. “Until then, I’ve got nothing but time!” I laughed and sat down next to her.

I told the woman a very short version of my story and handed her the hundred. “Oh, thank you Jesus!” she said. “Thank you so much!” Then she looked at me. “You’re going to be so blessed,” she said. “I already am,” I told her and she took my hand for a minute. “This will really help me out.”

She said her name was Ruby and I learned that she’s almost 66 years old. She’s lived the last 28 years in Portland, having moved from Oklahoma with her sister to take care of their grandmother. “We’re close, me and my sister. We’re always together. I’m surprised she’s not with me today!”

Before we said goodbye she let me take her picture. “I like this one best,” she said. “It shows all my gray but, hey, I earned that. Yes, I did.”

Ruby

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4 Responses to Nothing But Time

  1. DJan says:

    Such a lovely story, today (Saturday) when all the good people are supposed to be “raptured” up to Heaven. Well, you’re still here, I hope1 🙂

    • Jill Ginsberg says:

      Hello DJan! Yes, I am still here, although I ate a chocolate covered strawberry this evening and for a minute thought I had gone to heaven.

  2. andrea gehrke says:

    I have come back home again to immerse myself in your blog. It is always a source of joy and soul warming. As I’ve said before, I like to wait a bit to have several stories to read at once. I continue to be amazed at the “rich” experiences you are having with the people you meet. Ruby has a delightful, welcoming smile. I am happy to meet all these wonderful folks through you, Jill.

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