Lost and found and growing up:
This morning, I had the good fortune of finding two twenty-dollar bills on the floor of the lobby of my condominium building. I could not identify the person who dropped the cash. It could have been a delivery person, someone living in the condominium, or someone visiting a neighbor. This lucky find jogged my memory of when I was a teenager riding the New York City subway system on the way to High School when I found one twenty-dollar bill on the ground.
In the past and the present, I felt conflicted about what I could do with the cash, but for different reasons. At present, it’s been suggested that I put a sign up in the condominium lobby building where I live. A friend added I do not mention the amount of money, but if the person who lost the money can tell me the amount, it would work. No, it won’t work. Anyone can make a guess and even guess correctly. In addition, it could be one of the endless numbers of delivery persons who lost money who enter the building. Sociopaths would be eager to take the cash.
What were the choices available?
The Jewish tradition of Tikkun Olam translates to “heal the world.” The Detroit Jewish News points out, “The fact is that tikkun olam is not only Jewish, and it is not even a belief. It is universal and something that all humans are hard-wired to accomplish. People around the globe desire a better world.
At 80 years old I have enough money to live. Therefore, my daughters and I, along with a friend of mine whom I had consulted, decided that I would donate to a “dog rescue” organization.
At 17, I felt confused and guilty about the cash I found on the subway. First, I did not want to tell my parents because they might tell me to put the cash in my bank account towards my College education. Second, I wanted to keep the twenty-dollar bill to spend on something of my choice. I didn’t have to buy something essential.
Finally, I told my parents out of a sense of guilt. They said it was now my cash. I could do with it whatever I wished. Their reaction pleased and relieved me, but I still had a problem. My problem was deciding how to use the money.
I was an over-protected adolescent without experience with how to handle money.
Gradually the money was spent on potato chips, soda at the local candy store, chewing gum, and other items that I did not value and to me made little difference.
I was lost during my teenage years but found it in adulthood.
What would you do if you stumbled upon money?
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