Friday, July 23, 2010

The Face of Homeless - Accepting the Invitation

Part 1

I'm pretty sure an invitation to camp in my back yard is not what J was expecting. She looked at me with a disbelieving look. Still, I could tell what I'd said wasn't registering. I gave her a minute for it to sink in. Then I told her I thought I could get my hands on a pretty big tent and there was a place we could put it in our backyard. It wouldn't be much but it would be more private than what they had now.

"Sure!...............Are you sure?..................Is this going to be ok with your family?.............Are you sure you don't want to talk to them first?" and probably a dozen other questions poured out of J's mouth.

I reassured J it would be fine, not to worry. Even though I hadn't spoken to Dave I didn't expect he would tell me "No." I knew he probably wouldn't believe what I had done this time but he would honor it. That's just the way Dave is.

J reminded me that they had dogs which I hadn't really considered but I figured if they were surviving ok at the park with them, they'd probably be ok at my house. We keep Delila and Sugar tied up when they're outside so they don't chase the horses or run off. J and her family keep their dogs tied too so all I asked was they clean up after them like they would at the park.

As I recall J also asked if we had an outhouse. I laughed imagining what that might be like living on wetlands. I told her they would have to settle for sharing our bathroom with us. Then J was worried about her multiple trips in the middle of the night so I told her we'd just leave the door unlocked and the light on. We would make it work.

J gave me her daughter's cell number so I could call her if anything came up which meant something more like if I changed my mind or my husband had a stroke. I gave her my numbers for the same reason. I also gave her the directions to get to my farm so we had the major details worked out.

The plan was they would be there sometime around 5. She needed to pick her son up from school and take him to his job. After that they'd head out our way. In the meantime Dave would have time to mow the lawn so there was a presentable place to put up that tent.

With that decision made, I went back to schooling Legs and J went up to talk to her partner. I hadn't gotten much done and heat was beginning to rise off the sand. Before I got finished, J hollered at me and told me that they had a tent in storage and they'd go pick that up so I didn't have to worry about finding one.

That was a good thing because there was no guarantee I'd be able to get a hold of my daughter to even borrow hers in a timely manner. Sometimes she works pretty late and she doesn't always return my calls right away. That was one less thing to worry about.

I took Legs back onto the trails and we rode there for about a half hour. My mind was still racing about the homeless family I'd just met and the little we had to offer. I could even imagine myself in their shoes but I wanted to do what we could to make things not feel quite so overwhelming to them.

Legs didn't seem to notice I was distracted. He was his usual self on the trails. The horse really likes watching the squirrels, rabbits and miscellaneous birds. As far as the horse was concerned, nothing much had changed.

For me, things had changed a lot. It's probably an odd thing to say when I post about my life on this blog nearly everyday but I'm a very private person. I've kept to myself most of my life and I really enjoy the distance between me and my neighbors. I haven't had to live close to other people in many many years. All I could think of was embarrassing myself fighting with Dave.

To be continued.....................

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  1. A whirlwind decision, but how wonderful that you were open to it.I am loke you in that my "den" is private and I protect that privacy ,but opening the door to a family in need ...thats just different

  2. RR, your last sentence cracked me up, I can relate. Although, my DH and I hardly fight anymore. I would have invited them home too. Hoping everything works out good.

  3. Good luck with the homeless family. You are very brave to take them in. I love my privicy. I have heard of several people that took in some around here and had problems.
    Such beautiful horses. I would love an arabian.

  4. Thanks for all your comments on my blog Tumbleweed Crossing

  5. You are so brave. Like you, I like my privacy and don't do well with lots of company or visitors, unless it's a close friend who doesn't mind that I won't be entertaining her and scrubbing my house for her visit. lol!