Long Way Home

Snow & Ice Storm
Fritz Goro

Towards the end of last year, it was the day after an ice storm hit us, a homeless man got into my warehouse through an unlocked door.

It only took me a few minutes to realize he wasn’t able to put his thoughts together. I saw that clearly when  I told him he had to go back outside and he started to cry and said, ” Why? ” and in a flash I realized he wasn’t asking ‘why’ he had to go back outside.

So I asked him if he needed help, should I call a Paramedic and he said yes. I gave him something to wrap around himself to warm him up and he said, ” I’ve been cold a long time. My house is empty. Nobody is there.  I’ve been cold for a long time.”

I sat with him until help came  and the ambulence took him to the hospital.

I have been thinking about him. I’ve been thinking about the house he used to live in when he was part of a family. I think about the house he lived in before he ended up on my loading dock.

I wonder what color the walls in his house were and did he have a dog?  Does his Mom miss him? Does his Dad hope that one day he will call them and he will sound like the Son they used to know and do they still hope he is out there and ready to come back home again.

Maybe there is a new family living in the house he still thinks about. Maybe the walls are hung with pictures of ships at sea and kids in soccer uniforms. Maybe a cat likes to sun itself in one of the windows that he used to look out of in the morning.

But I think I understand what he meant. His old home might house a new family and the rooms may well be bursting with life and the tv is probably always a little to loud but in his mind and now in mine- it is an empty house and it is cold.

Abandoned house
Emanuele Bai2017

Abandoned villa
Emanuele Bai2015

Inspired by: Thursday Inspiration #204 Darlin’ Be Home Soon

4 thoughts on “Long Way Home

    • I have to navigate the homless population because of my work location. I just don’t have the heart to be angry with them. However, I am angry at the advocates and the city because nothing is changing for the homeless. You can try to get them into a shelter but it’s the lack of medical care that keeps them from being able to care for themselves. So all I can do is be helpful when I can. That’s it. And it;s not enough.

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