Eat For a Day
Eat for a Day Kewalos is a beach in Kaka’a’ko. It’s streets are lined with tents and shopping carts. A bright orange sun was setting on Kewalos. The sky was littered with pink and orange clouds, and everything that touched the sunlight had a slight orange glow. Two foot waves rolled in every now and then, occasionally occupied by a body surfer or surfer. The rocks were crowded with fishing poles, and the wall was crowded with fisherman patiently watching their poles for a bite.
Laughter, waves crashing on the rocks, and the clinking of Heineken bottles were all that could be heard. This beach treated everyone good, just the same as the beach wishes to be treated good. As I glanced over to the shower, I caught sight of an extremely skinny homeless man. It looked as if his skin was air tight against his body, highlighting all his bones.
He was wearing shorts that had a rip at the waist line, causing them to sag down. While I watched this man, I could make an assumption that he was mentally disabled. Seeing him talk to himself, and the way he staggered along the path constantly looking back over his shoulder, persuaded me to believe that mentally there was something that wasn’t right. He stood on the side of the pathway, and gazed out into the ocean, seemingly mesmerized by the sight. It was as if this view took his troubles away and for a moment he could bask in the peacefulness that was upon him. His day dreaming was abruptly interrupted when two people on mopeds came screaming down the pathway.
The homeless man jumped out of the way to avoid being creamed by a 200 pound moped. “Get out the way toothpick!” One of the moped drivers shouted. The two of them share a laugh to mock the homeless man, making sure that he could hear them. Snapping back into reality, the homeless man shifts his attention to the fisherman. Bare foot, he limped onto the rocks and approached one of the fisherman, then quickly retreated.
I kept watching him as he returned to the showers, but as soon as he reached the showers, he returned to the fisherman. It looked as if he was gathering up the courage to talk to one of the anglers. Again he retreated and headed back towards the showers. I watched as he paced back and forth, mouthing words to himself. A ring of a bell attached to someone’s fishing pole caught his attention. He started towards the sound of the bell.
This time he approached the fisherman and watched him closely. As the fisherman reels in a fish that looked to be about three pounds, the homeless man asks if he could have the fish. This enraged the fisherman. “What? No! Get outta here! F***** bum!”. Defeated, the homeless man limped away.
He reclined on a bench sat under a coconut tree. But right when he sat down he caught sight of another fisherman reeling in a catch. With out missing a beat, the homeless man popped up and approached the next fisherman. The fisherman unhooked the fish from the hook and went straight for his fish cooler, when the homeless man stopped him and points at the fish. After awkwardly standing there for a few moments, the fisherman handed him the fish. They both made eye contact and share a small smile and nod.
The fisherman casted out another line and within what seemed to be a few short moments, he’s reeling in another catch. The homeless man sticks around in hopes he could panhandle another fish. The fisherman reeled in his fish which looked to be a little smaller than the last one. He unhooked it, took a look at it, and hands it to the homeless man.The homeless man cleaned his fish in the shower, and walks away with his dinner.
Not having to worry about food for a day or two, the homeless man returned to his tent. Treating others with respect, humanity, and generosity, can easily make someone’s day exponentially times better. Many homeless people are mentally disabled. Homelessness is an ongoing issue for Hawaii. Treating homeless people with care and respect could be a step towards solving this problem. The phrase “treat others the way you want to be treated” carries a lot more meaning and importance than some people know.
One small act of generosity can go so far and affect a lot more people than just the people directly involved. Everyone has surely heard this phrase on many different occasions in their lifetime. Most probably agree with this phrase, but we should live this phrase, not just know it.