Tuesday, February 09, 2016

In from the cold

I hope.

We have a homeless guy who I think sleeps in the dumpster behind my office.  I feel a lot of guilt because there is a person who is clever enough to figure out that the safest place for him to sleep, as a homeless person, is in a dumpster.  He generally is out by the time I roll in each morning, but once in a while I catch him.  Our office is just a block away from the town square fountain.  In warmer months, he'll get up early, splash off in the fountain, then come gather his things and leave for the day.

He also regularly digs through the dumpster for stuff he can use or sell.

Problem Child use to freak out when she saw him.  She wanted me to call the cops to have them take him off.  When I could, I'd bring him bottles of water and/or food we might have in the office.  This use to make her mad.

Today, being mardi gras, I had a king cake I'd made for the office.  About lunch time, I took some over to share with   friends in a neighboring office and noticed the homeless guy digging through the dumpster.  When I left work at the end of the day, he was still at "work."

I sat in my car and watched him for a minute.  I'd been blasted by cold air leaving the office.  I noticed he'd found a bright purple pair of sweat pants he'd put over his jeans.  He was trying on a pair of shoes he'd found in the dumpster.  I went back into the office, grabbed a bottle of water and cut a large portion of cake.  I wrapped up the cake on a plate with a napkin and fork in foil and took it out to him.

He danced as if he were on Bourbon Street.  I don't think he even heard me tell him that the homeless shelter would be open with no restrictions due to the cold.

I hope he wandered over to the shelter tonight.  I can't believe how rich I am, sometimes.  And, I can't believe that there are folks who would shrug and act as if the fact someone could freeze to death for lack of warm, safe places wasn't their problem.  Don't ever tell me you're "pro-life" if you'd throw this guy's life away to save a few pennies on your taxes.

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