Soeur Caritas and I became friends one summer at an academic program in literature. As a non-practicing Jew, I didn't know quite what to make of her. Soeur Caritas was in France on a scholarship. She was from Burundi. Her country was dangerous, she told me. She had been jailed there several times for political reasons. One night, we were strolling Avignon’s balmy, crowded streets and a homeless man caught at her robe and told her he was suffering. He asked her to pray for him. He spoke slowly, his French easy to understand. She told him he didn’t need her prayers; she asked him to pray for her. After we moved on, I told her her answer had surprised me. She said she believed the man would help himself more if he stopped thinking of himself and offered her help instead. I left Avignon a few weeks earlier than Soeur Caritas. She’d admired my oversized tote bag, and I left it with her. I also had a device I’d purchased there to kill the mosquitoes that swarmed our rooms. It looked like a night light and plugged into the wall socket. It came with pink paper inserts that stank of chemicals. The mosquitoes were tiny, but loud and insistent; they buzzed your ears all night, making it impossible to sleep. I used the device sparingly, weighing sleep against the inhalation of toxins. I asked Soeur Caritas whether she wanted it and she did. She gave me her photo. We exchanged addresses. We stayed in touch via mail until I didn’t hear from her.