Bad luck this morning, but still better off than other homeless people I see


By Max R. Weller

I hadn’t been to Boulder Shelter for the Homeless since last Friday morning, and suffered from repeated attacks of Durchfall over the weekend. I didn’t play the role of humble beggar on the corner of N. Broadway & U.S. 36, returning to my campsite early to read and doze both Saturday and Sunday. This Monday morning, I happened to cough and that was enough to cause an embarrassing accident as I was starting to get up around 5AM.

It was time to do laundry at BSH, anyway . . .

After I’d showered and changed into clean clothes, however, I couldn’t find my wallet with all my remaining cash anywhere. I borrowed a dollar for the washing machine from an acquaintance, one who has borrowed money from me in the past. Later, I even retraced my steps back to my campsite and rooted through all of my gear, but no luck there . . . I must have forgotten to put my wallet into my locker — being distracted by my schmutzige Hose — and some opportunistic thief went through my pockets as I was in the shower, no more than 8′ away. (Me, I wouldn’t stick my hands in schmutzige Hose for any amount of money.)

Anyway, after the fruitless search of my campsite I stopped on the corner, without my “HAVE A GOOD DAY” sign, and it was no more than 5 minutes before a kind passerby gave me the $5 I needed for a day pass on RTD. Thus, I’m now sitting here in the warmth of Norlin Library on the CU campus.

Tomorrow, I shall have to make a concerted effort at “flying a sign” to replace my lost loot. As for food, I have plenty in my cache and won’t go hungry today.

To get to the point of this post: When I arrived at Boulder Shelter to await its opening at 6AM, there was some poor fool wearing just one tennis shoe (which was soaking wet) and nothing at all on his other foot. He rang the doorbell, and the staff member who answered gave him a “homeless disaster blanket” in its cellophane wrapper; Barefoot Bum stuck his bare foot in the bag and limped around until the door opened at 6. I’m sure there’s a story here involving alcohol and/or other mind-numbing substances, but I didn’t ask about it.

There was also Existential Drama from a homeless couple who have been hanging around since last Spring, and sometimes have had the use of an older SUV with Washington state license plates. Apparently, they spent last night outside without a tarp and got into a serious argument about who-knows-what; the young woman was crying, as the young man told her to go away. She cried repeatedly, and the young man told her to leave repeatedly. (I wished they’d both scram, but it didn’t happen.)

As happens so often, I was reminded how fortunate I am — all things considered:

NOT my campsite; I don’t have neighbors.

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