Elizabeth Melton Parsons


Are Country Folk More Honest – Part 1

1 Comment


will_work_for_foodWe’ve all seen the people with the signs “Will Work For Food”. And of course we’ve wondered if the people are seriously in need or is this how they make a living with no intention of doing any work. A few years ago I was on lunch break and had just picked up a chicken sandwich and drink at a strip mall. As I was leaving the parking lot, a man with just such a sign walked up to my car window. I said, “I have no work for you, but here’s lunch.” And I handed him the bag. Whether he was grateful for the food or angry because I hadn’t handed over cash, I’ll never know. This happened in a smaller town, not a city.

Last fall I gave a stranger the last of my cash. I’d seen him in his old pickup out and about for a couple of days. He was picking up the black walnuts under the trees. I was coming back from a walk and he was parked under the old walnut tree across the street from my house. I said good morning and he replied pleasantly enough. But he seemed lost and I asked if everything was okay. He dropped his head and laughed a little before telling me he’d run out of gas. Since we’re only a mile from the gas station I asked him if he needed a gas can to go get some. He replied that he’d not have any money until he’d sold his walnuts. I then asked if he wanted to use my cell phone to call for help. He said there was no one to call. I said sorry and went across the street and into the house.

I watched him walk up and down by his truck for a few minutes before checking my purse for money, hoping I had a five stashed away somewhere. Nope, all I had was a twenty. I took the twenty and went back across the road. I asked if he’d be offended if I gave him money. He seemed vastly relieved as he took it, assuring me he’d return it as soon as he’d sold his walnuts. I told him no, he didn’t need to do that. I believe this man had a true need. Okay, I’ve been called a fool more than once. As most of you know, I live in a tiny rural town, no city here.



When I was a much younger person I lived in a larger city and not having a car, I had to walk three miles to the grocery store. As I was leaving the store one day with my bag of food and a gallon of milk, I realized I’d left my purse on the checkout counter. Right outside the double glass doors was an enclosed entry with a bench. I am way too trusting. Since the counter was right next to the door, I set the bag and milk down, stepped inside, grabbed my purse, walked back out and voila! My goodies were gone. Five seconds tops and they were gone. I ran outside to see if I could spot the thief, but no. They were gone in a flash.

Part 2 will continue on Monday. I have disabled comments and likes on this post. Please come back and read part two. Then I’d love to hear your opinions. 🙂

Update: Now that I’ve posted part 2, I’ve reopened likes and comments here.

Photos courtesy of:

Public domain



Author: Elizabeth Melton Parsons

I'm a novelist, poet, and artist. I love books, nature, art, and gardening. I'm a rock hound and there's a photo of me with a cool fossil rock on my about page, I take a lot of nature pictures. The background here is one of mine. Unfortunately I recently lost my wonderful husband, but I'm grateful to have the blessing of two beautiful sons. elizabethmeltonparsons.wordpress.com is © Elizabeth Melton Parsons 2007-2018. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Elizabeth Melton Parsons with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

One thought on “Are Country Folk More Honest – Part 1

  1. Pingback: Are Country Folk More Honest? Part 2 | Elizabeth Melton Parsons

“Our opinions do not really blossom into fruition until we have expressed them to someone else.” ― Mark Twain

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