The old woman in the threadbare coat shook her head. "I can't remember." She was sitting on the sidewalk, her back against an epic stone building. Snowflakes swirling down from the clouds could be seen winking in the light from the streetlamp on the corner. Jane observed that the woman's legs, garbed in the lower half of a pantsuit, were drenched. The old woman was shivering. An old plastic tote bag stood open at the woman's side.
"Have you eaten?" asked Jane.
The woman, who seemed to have some difficulty with this question, shook her head. "Yes...sometime."
"Do you want a sandwich?" pressed Jane, digging into her satchel for the food. "We've got tuna fish, or PB & J. What do you say? You can have both."
Finally, the old woman smiled up at the much younger woman, nodded, and said, "That'd be nice, 'hon. Thank you."
Jane tendered the sandwiches, decanted a steaming cup of coffee into a foam cup, and left the stricken creature with a smile. "I'll be back tomorrow," she promised, and she went on to the next homeless person.
When Jane retraced her steps through the city streets a half hour later, she found the old woman, happily feeding her PB & J to a disreputable-looking cur who paid Jane no mind. Without a word, Jane dropped two more sandwiches into the tote bag and made her way home.