Chris Walsh (chris_walsh) wrote,
Chris Walsh

I didn't help.

He wasn't dead. At least he wasn't dead.

The man was passed out at a bus stop shelter. Sprawled. I waited and watched to be sure he was breathing. Another man showed up and wondered if we should ask TriMet to send security to check on him. A bus showed up only about a minute later and the man who'd wondered that boarded and spoke to the bus driver; I'l be honest, I didn't overhear what they said, and I don't know if the bus driver sent a message.

And, after a few minutes of watching the man, I left.

I feel bad and wrong about doing so. I can try to justify it by knowing I didn't really know what to do. I didn't have snacks or water I could give him. I could have risked making things worse for him; what if cops came? But it feels like I was feeding myself self-serving bullshit.

I didn't make the man's situation worse, but I didn't make it better.

I've been thinking about that, these past several hours. I've been on buses (air-conditioned on this bad air-quality day), and since then in Beulahland (an air-conditioned cave). I'm comfortable and OK. That man is uncomfortable and probably not OK. And I didn't help.

I need to be honest where I don't do well enough.
Tags: peregrinations

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