Friday, November 24, 2006
Did you know that today is called "Black Friday"? It is the beginning of the season that retailers hope will help close the year with their books in the black. Most make 40% of their yearly sales in Nov. and Dec. with 50% of their profit also occuring during this time.
Meanwhile, holiday's are always a bit strange when you are homeless. The streets are empty; you know that the day is supposed to be special, but it is like any other except tha there are fewer things to do. You are keenly aware that everyone's focus is on home and family. You make do with what you have and try your best to face the world squarely with a smile. Sometimes that feels more like a grimace.
One of my shelter residents, who is about my age and very clearheaded, twice gave me a big hug last evening and told me that he had tried to call his family but that they wouldn't speak to him. He gestured around the room to the 70 other guys in from off of the streets and said, "I guess this is my family."
The guys are pretty amazing when it comes to coping with all that is in their lives. I feel petty when I struggle with my own.