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Judah A Kessler
Writer in Troy, Vermont
We hear of them rather frequently these days: "Homeless people". There are reports, and "counts", news reports and articles, all the rave and rage. But...
WHO are they? HOW did they become "Homeless"? WHERE do they go? And WHAT do they actually do? And my least-appreciated associations: derelict, drunk, mentally ill, and the likes.
What would you do if you suddenly lost your job, or for any reason, couldn't afford the rent or mortgage payments? Where would you go, and to whom would you turn? Friends? Family? Neighbours? Strangers? How certain are you that any of these would take you in... take you on... actually help you?
I learned, in the most difficult way:
16 months in writing and recording, from a metal-frame bed, on a plastic mattress, often in the dark; over 2 years in transcription, traveling miles through the tunnels under New York City in 4 out of 5 boroughs ; many more years in gestation, New York to New England. This was a promise and the promise never left my mind or soul.
This is not the Journal, rather, this is the "life of" a daily journal, descriptive of daily existence IN a "Homeless shelter", experiences, first-hand, of myself and more than 850 other "Homeless" people. This is an illustrated account for every-one. This is "inside" the shelter.
With insightful information on issues often ignored and more often not considered, this is how the Homeless perceive those who claim to want to help, and how the Homeless who seek help are too often treated.
I promised my "comrades", my fellow "clients" and "residents" that I would tell our truths and here, the promise is kept. But this is only the beginning. Homelessness is not an ambition, not a goal, not an aspiration and is far from ever ending. But maybe my story, and their stories will take one step further toward lessening the incidents of people having to walk out of the door of their homes and into a dismal void and that reality of being so very much alone and utterly abandoned.
803 pages, with colour photos and original sketches. Not available on amazon, now in PDF format, readable on e-readers and personal computers alike.