My guess is she'd waited across the street, over where the city bus empties its load twice a day. I'm not sure but she'd probably kept watch on the shop; timed her arrival between customers. Like I said, not sure because I was unaware of her until she hit my shop's door bell.
I buzzed her inside. She wore an old funky coat, jeans, and flip-flops, bare feet in 26 degree weather. She had a death grip on a shoulder bag, clothe, dirty. Her hair was dark brown, shoulder length. She'd been pretty once in her life.
I said, "Good morning, may I help you."
She stood quiet, looked around. Then, "Ah, is there anything I can do for you to earn some money?" She avoided eye contact, seemed fidgety.
Me, "Not really, young lady, this is a one man operation." I sized her up, tried to guess her age. Thought, sixteen, seventeen. My judgement of women's ages isn't all that great.
"Are you sure. I'm good."
In return, "I'm sure." Took a chance, "How old are you, if you don't mind my asking?"
"Does it matter."
"Well, not really. Have a good day."
In a blink she came back with, "If it'll help I'm sixteen." Score one for me.
I'm not big in the patience department. "Okay, young lady, really, what do you want, a hand out?"
"Sure, but if you don't want to give me a few dollars I'll (preform a service) for you."
Sign of the times, perhaps. Yet, I set the blame squarely at her parents (or lack of) feet. She's now a throwaway. She'll probably, without help, die young.
What's happened to this countries children....
I scooted her out the door with five dollars. Out into the cold. God bless her.