Archive for May 9th, 2011

The Grand Symphony

Monday, May 9th, 2011

I love the warming centers. I’ve been so cold for so long, never knew I’d miss warm air so much. The ladies there always treat me so nice although I have no idea why. Perhaps they just feel sorry for a lonely old cowboy. But I’ve known so many trails since Oklahoma, and all of the have somehow led me here, to these warming centers in Eugene. They are the best God sent life-savers you could ever imagine. The only drawback is this. There you are, lying on a cot in a large room in the basement of a church, with about 100 other homeless bodies such as myself. As the evening goes on into the early morning hours the place becomes a veritable symphony consisting of a variety of snoring, accompanied by the occasional soft or loud fart. You really have to be there to appreciate the entire concert performance. It’s for real, just like survival.

Actually it’s kind of weird in symphony hall because the entire orchestra is used to being outside in the cold all the time. So the first time that we actually have a nice warm place to sleep we’re just not used to the warm air, creating a situation where you’re almost sweating while trying to get some rest. The experience is difficult to describe, but it’s very true. If you’re not used to warm air, it takes some getting used to. At the same time you certainly don’t prefer to be cold and freezing to death. You just want to survive. Don’t we all… Happy trails until we meet again!

by Cowboy

Single Mothers

Monday, May 9th, 2011

The one thing that I hope we can all agree on is the sadness we feel when we see single mothers struggling to survive on the streets with 2 kids, in a broken down van, with no place to go. It’s something we wish wasn’t true but it is. It’s a fact of life but what are we to do? Smile and walk on by, take her kids and send her over the edge. No, we should stop and ask what we can do to help with some clothes, food, a place to stay, or maybe a job. Be it housework, yard work, or something for a little cash so that the kids can stay warm or eat. What do you think? What would you do? What if it was you?

by Bobie Goddard

What This Newspaper Means to Me

Monday, May 9th, 2011

Regarding my life today working for The Oregon Vagabond, I can say this much – the stories we choose to write for the community are written from the heart, and we don’t mind sharing our personal stories. When I chose to live on the streets, I started out doing a lot of things which today I am not proud of. I started getting into a great deal of trouble with the law. It was getting harder and my luck was running out. Then I was introduced to the homeless newspaper (Street Roots) in Portland. I had been trying many different ways to make a living. One day I went to the office, applied for the job, and got myself a stack of newspapers. Then I had to pick an area where I would stand and hold up a few newspapers for sale. When people purchase the homeless paper, vendors keep all the profits, and buy more newspapers at the print-cost. Now I’m calling Eugene home, and I work for the Vagabond. So please keep supporting our newspaper, the vendors need these jobs and I hope you enjoy reading it.

by Taz

Inspired by Eugene

Monday, May 9th, 2011

The first time in my life at the of 27 years, I decided to take my first stroll out of Indiana, to see what was out there for me! I went from the bottom to the top of Cali by bus, foot and train. Somehow we ended up in Eugene about a month into our tour of curiosity – and who would have imagined that this was the place that would be our choice for living! We’ve been here for about a month and a half, living on the streets, and at one point it felt like we were headed nowhere.

I’d never been to a town where people that are homeless help others until now! We lost everything in a really bad rain and thought we were going to freeze. But as we walked to stay warm someone not on the streets gave us hope & inspiration, by helping us. The next day someone living like us gave us sleeping bags to stay warm! The reason that we’ve chosen to stay here in Eugene is because the people who reside here, both in homes and on the street, always in some shape or form, have a way to give hope and inspiration to all.

by Michelle Gunn