Sorry if my presence here bothers you! I really don’t want to bother you! You can pass by me. Turn the other way even! Or cross the street to the other side so you don’t see me…I’m indifferent to it. You know, I don’t bite…not even when you provoke me while insulting me, spitting at me, or when your looking down on me from head to toe! But please, don’t judge me! Don’t tell me to go to work because I am here asking for change. You don’t know my story! Don’t be fooled thinking I have a heavy set body and can easily work. What you don’t know is that I have on three sets of jackets to keep me warm in this cold winter that I feel every single day of being here in my bones. Wondering if I’ll have enough to eat. At night, I sleep with one eye opened. You never know if someone is going to come and do something bad to me. There’s a lot of crazy people out there. Don’t judge me thinking I am here to get money for an addiction, like drugs or alcohol. Or that everything here is a garden of flowers. I’ve been to many places for the homeless and believe me if you saw what I have seen you wouldn’t stay there a second longer. Seeing the little things that you have being taken from you all the time is not something to brag about. Your only allowed a bag with your belongings and when things are stolen all the time your better off outside. It’s not like being robbed outside and the thief gets away and maybe by a mere chance do you get to see him again. Now being robbed inside is tough, your looking at the robber all the time except you don’t know who it is. You ask around and nobody tells you anything. If they did see something they still won’t say anything. The hardest part is knowing that he or she can be staring you in the face, telling you good morning or asking how you are and you wouldn’t even know it. Yet, things continue to get stolen so after awhile everyone is a suspect. Everyone sleeps beside each other, what separates people are little curtains so you get a little privacy. It’s tough seeing little kids there. They cry a lot and don’t deserve the cards that were dealt for them but that’s life! So I decided to be on the street… While you leave work quick as possible because today is Friday, and you already made plans to meet your friends at the corner bar for a drink, or two or three… Remember I was once like you… I worked at the stock exchange and wore a suit and tie! I also made plans to meet friends for a drink or two or three… I had a big house, maybe a little too big for just me. I didn’t have a top of the line car because I’m missing the drivers license but I went everywhere by taxi. I had a good salary until a friend of mine that I thought was my friend that worked with me, set me up incriminating me and I lost my job. I went to jail for a crime that I didn’t commit for 24 months and most likely it was my friend that did, or knows who did it! I lost everything. I lost my house. I lost my friends. I lost my job. Here I am. I’m not embarrassed for asking for change. What I would be embarrassed to do is steal and that I wouldn’t do. Everyone has highs and lows, the secret is to turn it around, which I know I will do. That’s what I work for everyday to do! So please don’t judge me. You don’t know my story. You don’t know if one day you would be here sitting next to me too!