Although homelessness isn’t a glamorous place to be, sometimes things happen that are downright funny, like the time this couple living out of their conversion van left a Wal-Mart parking lot in a hurry and forgot that the clothes line on the roof of their van still had all their laundry on it and as they drove down the street, underwear and bras went flying all over the road!
One thing I noticed out here was the fact that you observe a lot when you are constantly moving around. Sometimes you see bad things, sometimes good. It just depends on where you’re at and when. I’ll never forget waking up in the middle of the night to the sound of shotgun blasts and the flashing lights of police cars chasing a white pick-up truck down the street. Apparently the person they were chasing was involved in a murder at a local motel and the police ran the guy into a median, then shot out the rearview window when the guy started shooting at the police. Needless to say, I didn’t go back to that neighborhood unless I was desperate because these kinds of incidents happened a little too frequently there.
I will never forget one older woman who saw us every day at a local park. She went there to walk for exercise in the mornings and one day she tapped on my window. I rolled it down thinking she needed help but to my surprise, she held up a bag of apples she brought with her that morning. She said “Excuse me hon, but are you homeless? I don’t mean to pry but I’ve been seeing you here all summer long and kind of guessed that you were. I want you and your girls to have these.” She became a good friend along with another older gal that walked her little dog around the park. I came to find out that these two ladies knew each other! The woman with the dog would bring occasional Happy Meals for my kids and I was so grateful that she did. I didn’t qualify for food stamps then because I was working but the money I made went into the gas tank and maintenance on the r.v.. It just wasn’t enough to survive on.
By contrast, there was another family that also frequented the park and they saw us with our r.v. but…the father had a position at the church that sat on the other side of the park and although my kids would talk from time to time with his kids, he made a point of separating his kids from mine once my youngest told them we lived out of the Minnie Winnebago. What was he afraid of? Homelessness is not a contagious disease.
These are the thoughts I thought today while sitting at the park with my youngest today. Seven years it’s been and I haven’t given up hope yet. I still have a way to go before I can get my transmission fixed on the mini-van but several people have donated funds to help me and I thank all of you that gave so generously. So far, $665.00 has been raised and I am truly amazed! With a little luck, I’ll be able to raise the rest of the money needed to get the transmission switched out before the end of April. Otherwise, I’ll have to scrap the van and figure out how to get another vehicle.
Day by day is how we’re living and tomorrow is the beginning of another new start towards a brighter future so don’t give up!