I was walking around Inspiration Point in the Presidio with my friends Elaine and Tom this morning when I spotted a quarter in the parking lot. I cried out with delight and found 3 pennies as I picked up the quarter. 28 cents! I haven’t mentioned finding money since I came upon 11 cents a couple of weeks ago, but in the 21 days of my experiment I have quietly accumulated 74 cents, which is getting close to the dollar I can spend each day. I’ve picked up a penny here and there, and voila! I have almost enough for one more day of eating. I have found this money in various locations—downtown, the beach, a park, in at least 5 different San Francisco neighborhoods. It makes me wonder if the poor in America find much money on the streets.
But wait, the story gets better. As I was walking home this morning, out of the corner of my eye I saw a crumpled paper with green ink, which in San Francisco usually turns out to be a discarded bus pass. But closer inspection proved the paper to be a five dollar bill so I swooped down on that Abraham Lincoln like a seagull on a French fry. Oh the joy, what joy! I couldn’t stop smiling as I stuffed that $5 bill in my pocket and skipped home like a little girl. Catching my breath between skips, I thought about the provision of the Creator. This $5 bill is FIVE MORE DAYS of provision. Finding it seemed like an icing-on-the-cake sort of way for God to tell me that He cares about my experiment, and He is always the Provider.
One hundred feet from where I found the money, I approached a cafe and briefly entertained the idea of grabbing a cup of coffee with my free money. (I also entertained ideas of buying a piece of chicken, some yogurt, cheese, a bottle of wine, and an ill-advised Lindt chocolate bar) But on second thought I will NOT spend this money. Since it was freely given to me, I’m going to take the soulful route and try to give it away. I’ll change it into 5 one dollar bills and keep them in a pocket, trusting that I will know in my spirit when it is time to give away a dollar or all five dollars. For the next 19 days I will conduct this “sub-experiment” of giving money away. If I can’t get rid of it, I’ll add the remainder to the amount I am giving away to the San Francisco Food Bank. (see Day 15 post)