Beware the panhandler

Monday, Aug. 6, found my husband and me in Monticello. Before leaving, we made our usual stop at the Maverick. A young, kinda ragged-looking little gal was standing on the city sidewalk in front of the store with a red gas can and a cardboard sign asking for money for gas so she could return to her home in Queen Creek, Ariz. I guess we’d listened to one too many church sermons on charity, but whatever, we handed her $10 to help her on her way.

Another friend coming out of the store did the same. Three days later we were in Moab running errands. At the south Maverick, what did we see? Why, it was the same little gal with her cardboard sign and little red gas can. My husband was upset so he went over to confront her. (Last I heard, Queen Creek or any other part of Arizona was south of Monticello, not north.)

After some hemming and hawing and sputtering, her male companion appeared, retrieved the gas can filling it with fuel, putting it in a nice, newer model car and the two of them made a hasty retreat. We spent another couple of hours finishing our errands and made our usual stop at the south Maverick before heading home to La Sal. What did we see?! Why, there she was back once more with her sign and little red gas can! Surprise! This time we made a call to the local constable, gave a short explanation of our adventures with this chick and left the rest to them and headed back to Sierra La Sal having learned a rather cheap – $10 lesson – on being charitable. Beware the panhandler.

–Maxine Deeter

La Sal