Friday, November 16, 2007
There are a lot of people that like to pay quiet secret little visit's behind the fence at my work. Most of them are living on the street. Drug addicts, girls....young girls...who sell themselves for whatever they need, usually drugs. There are older people who sit on a park bench and drink, some socialize, some like to make trouble, some just like to keep to themselves and go about their business for a quick shootup behind our fence. The fence is a chainlink fence at the back side of the car lot. So, when I go outside and smell that familiar smell of 'weed' in the air, I do take a wander over to the side to check up on who's in the corner. I have a miniature battle ground to walk through when none of them are there. I walk past needles, condoms, bottle's, beer cans, medicine containers, band aids, packaging that I'm not sure about. It is a mess. It is so sad to me when I go look at this back corner where the addicts pay a visit. I have had to ask if some of them are alright...because they sure don't look it. One young girl look's like she is about 35-40 years old. She is an epileptic drug addict....she's only 22. One older gentleman set up a house with a mattress, an old blanket, and a back pack. My boss and I approached him because he was in the corner making groaning noises and talking to himself and did not look good. He was startled to see us and proceeded instantly to gather his things. We told him we were not there asking him to leave. We wanted to make sure he was ok and if he had eaten yet that day....he hadn't eaten for 2-3 days. I told him to go get something to eat from the shelter 2 blocks away. The shelter was about to open for lunch and he didn't want to be a burden.He didn't want to leave behind what meant everything to him...a mattress with urine stains, an old fur coat, a bike, and a back pack. We told him we would watch his possesions and if the city came along they could not have his things. So he lifted as best he could and tossed over the fence to us his bed and the fur coat. We went back inside took up a collection and went to buy him some food for when he came back. He never did. I am so sad. This time of year really makes me appreciate what I have. These people have nothing, but to them something as simple as someone saying good morning or giving them a book to read means the world. I'm the first on the lot on saturday's and I open the gates and always smile and say good morning. My boss went into work early one morning and made a pot of coffee and went outside and poured them all a cup with creams and sugar. They were so appreciative. A smile, a good gesture goes a long way. Someone's day is certainly made better by a simple wave or a hello. We have a gentleman that walks by everyday with a shopping cart full of cans. His name is John. John used to work on electronics in the 70's. The computer age came about, his job was finished and he never did find work again. He stop's in every few days because we told him we have lots of cans at work. He sits and talks with us and then goes about his merry way. He is so intellegent it blows my mind that he lives off of can's and bottles...and does very well!! It's cold up here in the morning's but they are all still out there...somewhere. I see them off to the side by the tracks, sitting, waiting, some start fires to keep warm. They are beside buildings, in the ally's, between vehicles or sitting beside a bush. Now these people are gone. Where did they go? Will they be around again? Are they warm enough? Are they eating? Is someone else smiling and saying good morning to them?...or are they just getting dirty looks by people who pass by them?