goodbye to houston’s homeless people.

As I make my farewell tour around Houston, one place I miss is HHH, the medical clinic for homeless people.
I’d left without saying goodbye. I just felt it would be too awkward. I had bonded closely with a few of the people. Some of them had inducted me into the Crazy club, which I believe is analogous to being knighted. One lady had wanted her daughter to meet me very much. She was funny with her stories about her family- mostly due to the crass side-comments she’d include. When I told her I wouldn’t be here this summer, she just said “no, I command you to be here.” she was kidding of course, but also a little sad. We didn’t know what to say. It’s not like we’d write or anything…and I doubt she has a Myspace page.
Yeah, I got to hear some great war stories there. I shared with them my inability to smoke pot or drink, which they thought was great. I got hit on often, by men and women alike. Quite the ego booster when it didn’t scare me. Nothing like having a guy whose scalp is being held on by some bandages telling you you need a guy like him to complete yourself.
Or a lady telling you you’re really cute, and then asking if she’ll see you the next time she comes in for a pap smear. Romantic…really.
What got to me was the wide range of people who were homeless. One lady had been a florist at Kroger who just lost her job and never got back on her feet. One man was a mechanic who had injured his hand, and during the time he took off work he’d lost his job and the hand is still gimpy.
One girl was young, very fragile features. She had a broken leg that wasn’t healing well. Every other phrase out of her mouth was “praise Jesus”. She was shy and thought I wouldn’t remember her each time. She had a teardrop tattoo under one eye.
Then there was one poor lady. She was from Jamaica, migrated to the US, and ended up living in the streets. She was meticulous about washing, and one day while bathing someone stole her clothes. So she was found wandering naked in downtown houston, speaking with a heavy accent that made her hard to understand.
She was a conscientous lady. Every time I saw her she was dressed to the nines. I was amazed by the callousness of the people who stole her clothes, and the people who have taken the time out of their days to help her.
The staff of HHH is wonderful, and I did say goodbye to them because well, I had to give advance notice. Cidney Aae was especially awesome at helping to find ways to solve people’s problems that fell out of my range of knowledge, like housing and such. She made fun of my future home, telling me to watch out for the tornaders and subsequent flying bison.
Moving is sad times, but the chance of meeting even more nice people* is something to look forward to.

*more nice-people, not more-nice people

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Published in: on June 11, 2008 at 6:59 am  Comments (2)  
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2 CommentsLeave a comment

  1. hey! I didn’t get inducted into the crazy club! never even heard of it. i sad.
    cidney is indeed awesome. she seems to really care about finding a solution and is just a cool practical person who is nonchalant about helping people in a huge way.

  2. To be in the crazy club I think you had to correctly guess when the elevator doors would open on a Tuesday afternoon while reading Time magazine. Sounds kinda arbitary…and it is. Otherwise, it wouldn’t be the crazy club.
    Yeah, I liked everyone else in the office too, it’s just Cidney was in the trenches with me more than the others.


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