Feb 04 2007

Full Moon

Posted by J. Craig Canada in camping, greenway, Homeless

It’s a full moon and the government checks came out, at the same time. Not an auspicious mix.

Myself, I got a message on my BBS from an old friend who has been living in Marin for the past several years. He ran across my BBS while searching for news of Palm Springs medical marijuana. And said he would come down in a week and get a room so I could rest.

Well, he came yesterday, and he bought me a nice lunch, and we did a few things, and he left me at the Pizza parlor. That would be about 3-4 pm. Well I sat there until they started closing at 10:30pm.

I had put my bag in his car, so I wouldn’t have to carry it around, believing he would be back in town.

He called at 7:15, but the phone made a loud beep and went dead as soon as I answered. I left him several messages, trying to call him. The last one at 11pm.

Well, there I was expecting to soak in a hot bath tub and lie on a soft bed, and sleep as long as I wanted, and instead I found myself sitting on the hard cold concrete in the bitter cold, with nothing but my computer. No blanket or sleeping bag, or nothing.

I was up all night both because I was far too cold to sleep and because I was afraid if I fell asleep the computer wouldn’t be there when I woke up (I usually put it in the foot of my sleeping bag). And I cried. For 7 hours I cried. I sat in the entrance of a residential hotel for several hours around 3-4 in the morning, until someone told me to leave. And then, too cold to stand still, I paced from one end of town to the other crying hystericly and screaming “Rot in Hell.”

I’m not proud of it, but you can only take so much.

I guess it was 9:30 am when my friend called, apologized, and said his phone went dead and he had to drive back to Marin (a 3-hour drive) to get the charger, and was dead tired, getting back at midnight, and fell asleep.

Maybe that is what happened. I’ve done things like that. And he does have AIDS and probably some dementia. I think he told me they told him he has two years to live.

But I kept thinking it didn’t hold water. And I was (and am) exhausted and beginning to suffer sleep deprivation. And filthy.

As I said, I sat in the Pizza parlor from the time he dropped me off until they began to close, about six hours. And I kept thinking, well, he could have called from a pay phone. But then, maybe he didn’t have my number anywhere but in the cell phone.

And then I thought, I could have been out for cigarettes, or in the toilet when he looked for me in the pizza parlor. But I thought, also, my computer was there, and the case, and even though he only saw the case (and not the computer) once, still, wouldn’t I have noticed a vacant table with a case and laptop sitting on it? And wouldn’t I, whether I had noticed it or not, sat there and waited awhile, at least half an hour? Well, yes I would. That is what I would do.

He gave me my bag back, and gave me $10, and when he stretched a long lazy stretch and remarked about what a beautiful day it was I left him standing in the middle of the street.

I think the parting shot was that I had been up all night, was going to have to walk to the club and back since there aren’t any buses and since I didn’t have enough medicine to get me through the weekend, and I left him standing there.

Oh, and I noticed about half way there that I’d lost my tent. It slipped out of the cords on my pack that were holding it. By the time I’d noticed it was gone it was so far back that I couldn’t see it, and figured someone had long ago picked it up and it was gone.

The bag itself barely made it to Harvey West and back, the concrete eats through the plastic frame quickly, and has eaten through the middle. I was just too tired to deal with it.

On the way to the club, I sat on a bench to rest, and just started crying. It was an anxiety attack. The next thing I knew a man was standing there offering me money and to pray for me. When he said the thing about prayer, I told him to keep his prayer, but when he said just take the money I did, and told him I’d spent over $6,000 in the motels and was homeless because I was a medical marijuana patient. He blessed me and left.

I guess it was $10 he gave me. I didn’t look at it closely but just put it in my wallet.

I had to stop frequently on the way back because the wheels were completely worn off and the bag was dragging the ground, and was heavy, and my hand was going numb. I was having to stop about every 100 feet or so to let the feeling return to my hand.

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