Once, while lazily sitting at my desk in Elizabethtown, Kentucky, waiting to score better on my MMRPG, the nearby phone rang. i spilt my damn diet coke reaching for the receiver.
“Hi! This is so and so, and I heard you might like to volunteer.” She was right and I did. i enjoyed that kind of thing and …. she told me of the logistics and….
Whenever it was, the next day, the next week I was to start. I walked downtown to the square where i had been voluntarily delivering lunches and doing all sorts of stuff for folks for years, and found the necessary souls.
I asked them what they had heard about the place, and if there was anything I needed to know, to cover my ass , etc. The lady who ran the place was,, un hunh. Her husband was a cop, un hunh, her son was a jailer, un hunh. But nothing to be concerned about as far as trafficking issues.
Mind you, I was talking to Huggy Bear, who was later murdered while he was at home during a ‘home robbery.’ Un hunh.
Now, soon after I began working at the shelter, I became acquainted with the clients, and the other volunteers, and a small number of the administrators. they were all as human as I was, capable of feats of grand strength as well as frustration.
When they heard I walked three and half miles, one way, to volunteer at the shelter, they grew concerned and arranged to drive me home. Since I am epileptic, I choose not to drive. I do not expect rides and am therefore not dependent on them. Walking through town, I’m walking past landmarks I’m used to seeing, past yards I’ve mowed, yard sales, yep, yep yep, yep.
Clothing stores would give me hangers. One was a panties store! Another store would give me their unsold pastries to hand out.
After a few years I would became pretty adept at doing most all the chores at the place, except writing stuff down. I often would forget to write stuff down. Bags of food I would hand out, or bring to the elderly, or homeless, etc.
One day, one of the other volunteers called me a thief. I figured the board had decided I was a problem, so left. i pointed out to the Jesus freak side of the process that, in my time volunteering there, I had walked more than a thousand miles to help them keep their doors open, and if they thought they could do better without me, they should.
In the time that i had volunteered, I had introduced my acquaintance to the shelter and its administrators. he had about as much respect for them as they had for me. he did however, much more for the shelter than anyone could have imagined. He revitalized it. he saved it from itself. He made it whole again, physically. He even helped up a warehouse for the shelter, to shelter the stock of the shelters in the area. It is a shelter shelter shelter. He helped remodel the 3ser. He climbed ladders. led a remodelling campaign like no other. In fact….
These days he is helping the River city of Louisville Kentucky recover its dignity from those who would keep it scarred and bleeding. He is spreading the good news, that those who have organized to reshape, remodel, and renew are doing just that!
They are neither vandalizing nor assaulting anyone. They are working within the stringent template of self-respect of their moral influences Travis Nagdy and Stachelle Bussy, to name two of many. They continue to encourage and deliver this group of Americans -through the internet-from defeat to victory, from the street to what was promised them.