It was just this past summer that we came across this beautiful 12-year-old girl who was selling (the tastiest) eggs, cheese, and a few vegetables. From afar we thought she was an older woman who happened to have small figure, but as we got closer we were surprised by her youth! The young girl had her head down and was quietly sweeping around the food she was selling. Completely ignoring the hustle and bustle of the city environment around her.
When we approached her and exchanged greetings, we sensed her shyness. Maybe she was she was new at this, I thought. We smiled at her and quickly started a small conversation with her to change the vibe a bit:
“That cheese looks good! Did your family make it at home?”
“Yes.” she replied shyly, “we just made it this morning.”
“Ok great! Can we get a quarter pound of cheese and two dozen eggs, and a few of these vegetables please?”
She quietly pulled out plastic bags, bent over, and started to carefully place the food for us. As she was doing so, my head was filled with so many questions: Why is she out here alone? What’s going through her mind right now? How is her family living? Why don’t I have a million dollars to give?! How did she get to the city from the farm side? What kind of circumstances is she dealing with at home? What’s her dream? What does she want to be when she grows up? Is she happy? I hesitated though. I didn’t want to freak her out. Though, I was so curious as whether she attended school or not. As I was getting ready to ask, my mom raced me to that question. “Do you attend school?” She asked as she extended out her arm to hand over the money to the young vender. “Yes! I attend school.” She sweetly replied with a smile. We told her to keep the change as we walked away forever touched by the vibe of humility that she had.
This young girl’s demeanor, her round young face, her golden freckles, and her humble smile are stamped into my heart to this very day. What a sweet person she was. I’m still baffled at her strength to vend on the streets of Egypt. I mean here I am at my mid-twenties, and honestly, I can barely cross the streets on my own, nonetheless street vend!
The unfortunate reality of this world is there are many beautiful young souls like her who are out in the streets day and night to help their family. My whole being wishes the world was a better place. A place where young people didn’t go through such hardships out in the streets at such a tender stage of their lives. All I can do right now, is be an Earthling who gives out positive vibes.