Ok readers confession time again, how many times have I confessed stuff to you now my trusty readers? I’m sort of surprised you haven’t contacted WordPress demanding they remove the blog of that homeless confessing human. Anyway I digress. I’ve been extremely stressed recently, I’ve had the death of my friend that hit me hard because I saw so much of myself in him. The sheer normalness of his dreams, to go back to his job, the averageness of what he cared about, his family and the way he used to say “your crazy, crazy” in disbelief when I got out my camping stove and cooked up a meal. I’m cashing in some sofa surfing credits in Edinburgh at moment, thing with sofa surfing credits is you build them up by spending time away, outstay your welcome and you’ve lost the sofa for good. It’s a fine line plus my insomnia and need for the solitude of outside means I am drive by an internal need to stay on the move. Im sure a doctor would label this as the mental illness PTSD. I’m likely to tell that same brand of doctor to stop being so judgemental and take their nose out of my life.
Im in Edinburgh because after over a year of being told I’ll be killed, punched, shouted at, discriminated against, physically assaulted……you get the picture, one of the ring leaders of this concerted effort to drive me out of the city appeared in court. Guilty of attempting to pervert the course of justice with threats and intimidation. A kind of result, especially as the man is probably high up in one of Edinburgh’s drug gangs. I don’t engage in gang culture or violence, it’s school playground stuff, however homeless services don’t like service users, (what a horrendous terminology being classed as a user. Im a service used because I do feel used by them) services don’t like service used who dare to behave as a normal intelligent adult. I think it spoils the martyrdom power trip most of them revile in. I feel sorry for these people, their lives must be pretty empty if their whole sense of identity and worth is being a neglected servant giving up their free time to serve the poor vulnerable incapable homeless people. (This is where you shed a false tear of pity for the poor helpless unfortunates who can’t do anything to help themselves. This is also where I throw up and say “the only reason we can’t do anything for ourselves is because services punish capability with exclusion from meals, night shelters, opportunities to gain references and move on with our lives. I’m not an income source and refuse to be ‘saved’ by a homeless charity. Rant over). Reckon your going to stop reading block this blog now in disgust at my failure to be eternally grateful for whatever morsel of food I’m offered. Sorry I’m looking forward to going back outside and cooking on my camping stove.
You see homelessness has changed me or I’ve found myself not sure which. I thrive on the independence, the self reliance knowing that each decision could be life or death so I’m careful to choose wisely. I love learning the limits of my self reliance survival skills. The freedom, the ridiculousness of doing normal things like washing my hair, cooking a meal, hand washing my clothes, in a completely abnormal situation. What’s the harm of washing your hair in a public sink making sure you don’t splash any water on the floor? Where else am I supposed to wash my hair? That council is really spitting teeth at me, homeless hostel manager wanted to take me round the corner to “have a word with me”. Think he might of wanted to talk with his fists.
Extinction Rebellion may also be upset with me for using the revolutionary tactic of wind and sun to dry my T-shirt that I’d just hand washed, dodging snow showers, being my own washing line and taking the last bit of dampness out of the cloth via the radiator of my body. You can call me zero carbon footprint Billie. Yes I know its ridiculous but I’m having fun.
But theres a season for everything and I know soon it will be the season to grow up and behave a bit more seriously. I may even move into a fixed abode (that’s a flat or house to those non-homeless readers amoungst you). I’m angling for a career you see. I’ve got this crazy ambition to join the UK Civil Service. Thing is I’m now passing all the tests including the psychometric one which gauges whether a person can actually behave like a Civil Servant. Apparently I’m passing this test at quite a high level.
This is the thing I can feel the time for putting down my rucksack and settling into the rat race drawing close. Saying that there’s an apprentiship that looks more like fun than work which I plan to apply for. Is work actually work when your job feels like a hobby you’ve never had the chance to take up?
Change creeps up on everyone. It sort of hides round the corner waiting to jump out at you shouting BOO! Homelessness gives you a sixth sense and I can sense that rascal chance hiding somewhere close by, lurking until the moment where it jumps out at me.
I’m also getting old. In my head I’m a free spirited 17 year old with fake ID getting into the nightclubs and all night raves. In my heart I’m an impish 3 year old full of mischief and absent of any intent to cause harm or damage. In my bones I’m 223. I also can’t get health-care, don’t question this one it relates to, refusing to be part of the conspiracy of silence that allows mental health patients to be abused and the fact that I see the world differently than most, money is just a necessary evil to me, it’s not the be all and end all. Money doesn’t motivate me that much. Some people see this as a clear sign of serious mental illness (these are probably the same people who think spend lots of money on alcohol to throw up in an alley at 3am is 100% normal. If that’s normal I’ll be a complete weirdo.)
Problem is, as I’ve come down from the extreme stress of the last few weeks, started to reinhabit my body. Stress takes your awareness away from your body, you just don’t feel it, don’t notice hunger, you run on adrenaline trying to avoid the Sabre Toothed Tigers hiding at every turn. I’ve almost completely returned to my body now. My stomach is constantly complaining it’s empty, ok it’s got a point, my feet are asserting their rightful share of blood circulating around my body, and different aches and pains are forming an orderly que to be noticed. Yep I’m feeling old.
I need to retreat, I refuse to say retire, from my homeless, NewAge Traveller existance and move into a flat and go to work regularly. I’ve got to go back to living a normal life.
Living a normal life, that will be one heck of a scary adventure! Do you reckon I’m up to the challenge my loyal readers?