Ferret weathered last night out-of-doors with aplomb. I walked down to Sarah Jay’s and bought us two breakfast platters in to-go boxes and took one to Ferret. He was glad to get a hot meal.
It was a beautiful morning at dawn. The horizon shown a glorious hue of orange as I walked through the woods to Ferret’s campsite. I had to wait for a very long freight train to clamor by before crossing the tracks. The engineer waved at me heartily as those big engines roared past. I waved back vigorously and smiled. I love trains.
I found Ferret huddled up in his heavy coat smoking cigarettes next to a small fire as I walked up. I shook his hand and told him good morning handing him the breakfast platter.
“You are awesome, dude,” He replied about the breakfast. “I am starving.”
“The breakfast only cost three dollars so it didn’t break the bank,” I said. “Don’t worry about paying me back.”
I sat down next to Ferret upon the ground and we began to eat our breakfasts.
“How did that fleece liner work last night?” I then asked him.
“I stayed toasty warm all night and actually got some sleep,” He replied with his mouth full of food. “My head kept getting cold though. I need a wool cap to sleep in.”
“It actually got a lot colder last night than the National Weather Service had predicted,” I said. “My wireless weather station showed a temperature of 36 degrees when I left the house to walk down here.”
“Goddamned cold,” Ferret said. “Why does my life always have to be fucked up? I quit drinking and thought things would get better. I stayed in that home for homeless men and listened to all that Jesus and God bullshit that was supposed to change my life. It just left me confused and feeling guilty. I just can’t catch a break. I get so tired of my life always being so fucked up.”
“Drinking will only make things worse,” I replied trying to dissuade him from going back down that path.
“I know,” Ferret said. “But that shit makes you feel good for a few and makes you forget your problems.”
“And you wake up feeling like shit the next morning and the problems are even worse,” I replied.
Ferret’s fire had begun to die down. I and him both set out on our separate ways through the woods to look for more fallen limbs and sticks to burn after finishing our breakfasts. There wasn’t much wood to be found. I did find an armful and Ferret did as well. We met back at his camp and threw our piles down next to his now almost dead fire. It was just smoldering and smoking coals at this point in time.
“Well, I will see ya man. I am off for my daily hike,” I said.
“See ya bro and don’t walk too far,” Ferret replied.
I hit the tracks and walked all the way up to Kroger and then back to home for a total of 6 more miles today. It took two hours to walk that distance. Well, let me go get some laundry started. I am down to my last two pairs of clean underwear. Oh, how I hate to do laundry and lug all those bags of clothes upstairs. I guess I should just be grateful and quit bitching. My life is a walk in the park compared to Ferret’s these days.