Amtrak ticket one way southbound-$17. Dinner and breakfast for the road $13. For one man in Hastings it costs $30 for a chance at a new life in a new town. Steve(not his real name), showed up on Tuesday and asked for help. A long time drug abuser, he insisted he was not an addict. When he stopped doing drugs, he was told to leave where he was staying, a rat-infested, condemned house he shared with 8 other men.
He had been down, the work was not hard, but the drugs were the pay and he wanted a chance to pull himself back up. He couldn’t do it he said, as long as he was abusing the drugs. So he prayed and he asked God for the strength to go one day, then another, then another. And on the seventh day, he left, came to town and asked for help getting home.
He went to church that night and stayed on the couch at a friend’s house and with his $30 he caught the train south.
Steve had a nice smile and a friendly way about him. He had been a chef and thought he might like to go back to it. He shook my hand and then gave me warm hug and promised he would call when he got where he was going.
It seemed like a really good investment to me. The price of two pies seemed not much to change one man’s life. Thirty bucks. That’s what it cost.