As I and several other vendors were debating whether or not to set up today, given the impending weather conditions, the subject of another vendor who shall remain unnamed (Rudy) came up. He is the unfortunate owner of two kidneys that won't work. He and his family are from Egypt. They are traditional Muslims. They work their ----es off at the markets selling produce, he has been selling used vehicles, the boys work with them and he can't get on the recipient list until he raises enough cash.
Well, the market community has rallied and is doing a fundraiser for him. They have requested, and are receiving donations of products from the vendors, and are combining them into gift baskets which are being raffled off at a certain price per ticket to help raise the cash requirement for his placement on the list.
When I talked to his wife and showed her our Christmas gift basket contribution, she shook her head and said she didn't understand and couldn't believe the generosity they were receiving. I couldn't think of a sincere and warm reply and simply said that that's how American culture is. They are Americans, legally, I think this experience will forge them into our culture a little more; they already have the work ethic.
Later I heard another vendor who had spoken to Rudy who said his conversation with Rudy was similarly not what we are accustomed to in our country. He said "In our culture, we believe that if we are meant to receive the money, God will provide it."
I talked about that to "Pierogi Girl" and told her that his idea is not so far off. The mobilization of people and money he is witnessing may actually be directed by the hand of God. He need not be so surprised. It reminds me of the old joke of the man on the roof of his flooded house, waiting for God to save him. A kayak came by and he told the pilot "God will save me!", Later a motor boat came by and he told the captain, "God will save me!" Finally, when the helicopter came by, he said, "I don't know why all you people bother with me, God will save me!'
After he drowned and was facing St. Peter, he said "I can't believe God didn't save me!"
St. Peter said "He sent a kayak, a boat and a helicopter for you, go to hell, stupid!"
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