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Have You Seen Patrick

A Wednesday evening, it’s a bit tasty outside, everyone is walking at pace not looking at each other just focused on getting to where they need to be.

A small very slight man approaches me, straggly Afro hair, clothes unkempt, tatty shoes on his feet and an un-groomed beard and moustache. You would walk away in your right mind, no time for this, what does he want? oh no he is coming towards me, you say calmly, “ have you eaten today? Come with me”. We enter Tesco Express on Waterloo Road, we wonder round and I say quietly, “pick whatever you like, it’s okay”.

He looks at me incredulously. “Really? Smiles grabs some apples, a sandwich and a drink saying these will last a few days. “Can I have some cigarettes?” he asks when we get to the till? The shop assistant clearly knows Patrick and has probably ushering him to leave the shop many times.

“10 BnH please” as the shop assistant reaches for the cigarettes I say make it two packs... Patrick’s face lights up and he says “will you be here tomorrow? Thank you” 🙏. I say not and continue my walk down The Cut towards Blackfriars station for my train home.

A small act of kindness I had forgotten, I never did see a Patrick again.

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