About Me

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My human, Mia, has been working so hard. She is so inspired by my plan. My plan is to go all over the United States meeting new and wonderful people, to share their stories, and to find the connection between all people. Mia is so wonderful, and I want to meet more wonderful humans like her.

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

10-12-10 - The realities of Homelessness

We stay with friends and family when possible, and we have even stayed with people we don't know, but people our people know. (was that confusing enough) Anyway sometimes Mia wants to go somewhere that we don't know anyone, or don't know anyone to stay with. When that happens Mia & I sleep in the car. Mia has us on a very tight budget, so we stay in hotels very rarely.

Mia & I have made the choice to be homeless.  We are living in the car for all intent and purposes, even when we stay with someone we are only visiting.  Mia has figured out where it is safe to park and sleep for the night, and how to "bathe" when she has no facilities. Mia has had to drop some modesties she previously had. When we are out and about like "everyday people" we are treated "normal". No one knows we just slept in our car the last three nights, homeless people ask us for money & homed people treat us like homed people (homed - is that a word?). 

But on the rare occasion someone sees us in our "abode" it is interesting to watch their reactions.  

Homeless people leave us completely alone, and ever walk further away, like they are trying to give us our privacy, even looking the other way most of the time. They also don't ask us for money, or "bother us". 

Homed people do just the opposite, they stare. They still don't approach us, stop to see if I'm having car trouble, or need help. They just stare, almost wrecking their cars sometimes with their rubber necking.

I'm not saying either is wrong or right for their reactions to me, it just got me to thinking. 

I'm not truly homeless, I know at any moment I can choose to drive to Mia's parent's home or call our next closest friend and we'd have a roof over our heads. So I will not pretend to know how it really is for homeless people.

But I do know how it is to be a "homed" person. I know I've seen people in a shopping center parking lot with belongings all around their car or what appears to be changing their shirt by their car.  I've assumed they had a flat tire or car trouble.  I've never stopped to check on them and never once assumed them "homeless" or on a journey.  I've always come up with some other reason for their actions or thought "how tacky, they could go home and organize themselves there" (If I didn't see a flat tire, or some other reason to have their belongings strune about a parking lot).

I'm not saying someone in a parking lot changing clothes, or reorganizing their cars is wanting privacy or attention.  It just now makes me wonder all the potentially amazing stories I've missed over the years.  

It also makes me wonder how you my readers would react to seeing "someone like me" in your local shopping center parking lot. What your thoughts would be.  

And I also wonder if now after reading this you yourself are pondering this too, and if I've changed how you might view someone in that scenario.

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