Care, Concern, and the Nature of Worry

Pony and I traveled into Santa Fe to meet a friend of ours last night. The plan was to meet our friend, Teri, at the Trader Joe’s in Santa Fe, at 5pm. We took a few minutes to fill our severely empty gas tank, but arrived at the Trader Joe’s parking lot at just a few minutes past 5.
And we waited.
While we waited, we were accosted by a couple of panhandlers. The second one, gave his tale homeless woe, and I offered to buy him a sandwich at the Subway, just across the parking lot from Trader Joe’s. He told me his name was Bodie. We walked into the Subway, and I let him order a footlong, along with a bottle of Coke. The whole bill came to about $10. I would have done better just to slip him a little change. Still…
We waited.
Bodie swung by on his bicycle to tell us that he was still trying to muster up some change to charge his cellphone (a homeless guy with a cellphone…?… well, okay). Still, at this point, having felt that I had donated enough to Bodie’s survival, we shrugged our shoulders as he went down to the other end of the parking lot on his bicycle.
We waited.
It was now nearly 6pm; almost an hour past the agreed upon meeting time. Pony tried calling Teri’s phone, but there was no response, and an announcement that the voicemail box was full. She sent a handful texts; another one every ten minutes or so. Still no response.
Last week, there was a quote from the Dalia Lama posted on Facebook about worry. “If there is a solution, then you work towards that solution. If there is no solution, then worry will not change anything.” I am be paraphrasing a little, but that was the gist of it. I shared that quote, lending my own agreement to the spirit of it. But now as I was confronted with a form of worry that may not have been adequately covered by the Dalai Lama’s words. It is the worry of not knowing. In not knowing, you, you are not sure whether there is a solution or not. You do not know if there is something you can do, because you do not know what may have happened.
By 6:30, we left a final text, giving the address of the restaurant we planned to go to for dinner, still having heard nothing.
Worry.
As we started up the car and prepared to head for the restaurant, Bodie rode by on his bicycle.
“I’m not crying, but I hid the sandwich and the soda behind a trash can, and somebody stole it,” he told us.
Sigh.

 

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