So much has happened in the last few days that I don't even know where to begin. I suppose I'll start with the couch. I went back to it. I was in need. It had rained all day and the ground was wet. Also, I was tired. The door was locked and that broke my heart. They must have seen me on the camera. Well, I'm grateful I didn't get into trouble. However, this wasn't good for me. But this is exactly why I keep a few spots handy. I decided to go to my other spot, the park. Along the way I saw a new spot. A better spot! I walked (snuck) over and checked the door......unlocked, YES! The first words that ran through my head where "Thank God". Its not as comfortable but its more private and I like that a lot. Even for the homeless.... when one door closes another will open. You just have to have it in you to look for the doors.
The other day I was walking through some heavy brush (I'll tell you about that in a second). I came across a homeless man laying on a few pieces of cardboard. He did not want to be seen. He had a few things with him and he was well hidden. But, it was what he was doing that caught my attention the most. He was reading a book. It was like 4:00 in the afternoon and this guy was just laying around in some brush under a tree reading a good book. Mabey he knows something I don't. I thought to myself, "What is this guy doing? How is he ever going to make it off the streets? Why isn't he looking for doors?" Maybe he was just satisfied with where he was in life. I can't do that though. I must find a way out. Seeing this guy made me check in with my goals - and my plan.
Some homeless people just expect to be taken care of I think. Or they are hoping for some sort of miracle to happen. Like the homeless people I used to see at the beaches everyday - its like they just stand around with their hands out all day long and hope something will going to happen. Like some rich guy from Laguna beach is just gonna come over and adopt them or hand then a few grand (you know, to help them get on their feet). Me, I can't do that and I won't hold my breath. Now, I won't ask for help from anyone, but once or twice someone asked if I needed help and I said yes. I don't feel bad for that. I just don't ask for free handouts. How will I reach my goals if I do that? How could I become independent (like I used to be) if I did that? I might be homeless but I still have pride and respect for myself.
Now don't get me wrong. I feel bad for anyone on the streets living a homeless life. And if homelessness happens to you and you don't know how to get by, I can see why you might put out your hands. But most treat it like its a beach party. My guess is that only about 30% actually make it off the streets. But its probably less. And I blame that mostly on state programs and laws.
I went back to get my bag last night. LOL, someone else found it! I couldn't believe it! Someone actually found it, pulled it all apart, stole one hat and some soap. LOL! And what's funny about it was that most all the clothes I had where fresh and clean. All those things were left in the bag. So, I got it all together. It wasn't easy because I was deep in brush (this is how I ran into my homeless book reading friend) and all my clothes where scattered. I got it all together and did my laundry (which I couldn't afford). Then I found a new spot for my bag that was much deeper into the brush. Good luck finding that, LOL!!
I've been working on my plan every day and am just now starting to make progress. When you are homeless everything is a hurdle. I'll be revealing my plan to you soon. I'm just nervous about it and don't want you laughing at me now.
I once meet a homeless man that hadn't had a shower in 8 years. Believe me when I say that you could smell every single day of those years. I wondered what would happen if he did take one. How would it change him? How would it help him? I think it would have done wonders for him as far as being homeless in the public. I also think he personally would have changed. I wondered if he showered would he feel like a new man? Would he be shocked into remembering the life he had before this life of a homeless man? A life where maybe things where better for him? Also, if that happened do you think he might have done a little more to come up and get off the streets? I don't know. I will never know, but what I do know is this: taking showers is important and many homeless people don't get to take one. How would you feel walking around all day sweating your butt off, wearing jeans, and hugging all of your stuff just to have to sleep in some bushes, and not being able to do anything about it? I hope it never happens to you. I thought about this homeless man the other day as I was taking my 3 minute bath in the sink at McDs. I though how nice it would be if each major city had homeless showers scattered throughout the city. I pictured it much like a "port-a-potty" sort of thing. It would have a side closet to place one's stuff, a soap dispenser, and a box of shower footie's (let face it, that would be a must-have). I would put up about 5 here in Tampa. The homeless people here would look and feel so much better. Anyway, it was just a thought.
Homeless tip :
Reorganize often! Once every 3 days or so I take 30 minutes to go through all my stuff and reorganize it. It helps keep me sharp, fast, and feeling better about my living conditions. Even homeless people collect garbage over time. Get rid of it! You don't need it! I have about mmmmmmmmm 12 pockets on my backpack. I know whats in every single one. If I need my chap stick..... there it is. You never want to have to shuffle around and take out your stuff to get what you need, ever! Its embarrassing and it lets everyone know what you have and who you are (someone living out of a bag). So keep it clean and keep it light.
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