THERE WAS NO NEED BUT…
I didn’t have to go to the streets to make money by finding guys who’d pay for my company. Once I had my apartment I had a place to keep my stuff. My phone wasn’t stolen every other day. I could make a living by waiting on calls and emails. My phone was always with me. Yet, I still went downtown. Not because I had to but because I wanted to. I missed town when I had been away for awhile. In one treatment they said people get addicted to the drug, the way they do the drug and what they do to get the drug. Town did indeed call to me, urging me to keep my hand in the Streetwalker game.
WHAT IS A HOME?
Ever hear the expression that home is a place where when you go there, they have to take you in? By that standard downtown Honolulu is my home. The weather is warm, there’s no gun violence, and even in high risk occupations, murder is rare. It’s reasonable for me to be fearless when I approach any group of homeless in order to settle in among them. The homeless are either severely mentally illll or addicts. It’s the latter group that allows me to enter. I feel comfortable with other addicts, not the normal people. I wasn’t comfortable with normal people even when I was one of them. I never thought I would feel a connection with homeless people. I never thought I would be one of them.
IT MAKES SENSE, ON THE ONE HAND
After graduating in a magna cum Laude blaze of glory from my ivy league college, the street seemed the last place for me. However, my birth mother went between homeless shelters, mental hospitals, and the streets all of her life. In a way I am a natural to return from whence I came. I didn’t meet her until I was 19 but I still became like her. Maybe it is true that blood will tell. Too late I discovered I wasn’t better than street people. She died in 2000, never feeling any acceptance from me. Today, I can’t deny the obviousness of who I am. I’m just glad that somewhere in the world I can approach a small group who will allow me to sit with them.