Spent some time this morning in the cold helping Ferret carry the last of his belongings to his campsite. The campsite is a mess and looks just like some ne'er do well homeless person has set up home. Beer cans are everywhere. An old fire pit sits with half burned trash hanging out of it. Ferret's belongings are scattered about under a tarp tied between trees.
"You're going to draw attention to yourself," I warned Ferret.
He didn't seem too concerned. It is paramount to be stealthy when homeless.
The cold is already getting to him. Ferret walked all the way down to Wal-Mart to buy some warmer clothes. He changed in the bathroom and threw his perfectly good clothes away in the trash can.
"I didn't want to have to carry them," Ferret told me as he regaled me in this tale.
I shook my head in disbelief as Ferret is going all about this the wrong way.
I then sat down for a long time as Ferret drank beer and we talked. They don't sell beer here on Sundays in the Bible Belt so he had to stock up the day before. I don't know where Ferret is getting all this money, and I am afraid to ask. I noticed it was expensive beer. Budweiser. Beer I could never afford when I was homeless.
"Ferret, what are you doing to do?" I asked of his homelessness genuinely concerned.
"I am going to drink myself to death," he replied with an air of joking as he laughed.
"Don't you have goals and aspirations?"
"What are your goals?" Ferret asked me dodging the question.
"To go back to work. To buy a new computer. To cherish my car that was stolen when I get it back. I am putting a lot of stock in vocational rehabilitation. I also want to get into digital photography."
"I've never had goals," Ferret said. "I just live."
Oh, how I knew how he felt. I've never had goals as well until recently. My remission from my schizophrenia had spurred me onwards to think ever more progressively. To work. To have the self esteem of supporting myself. To be able to afford my favorite hobby: computers. I know all too well how Ferret is thinking, though. I've been there myself, homeless and aimless. It is a quagmire of a bottomless pit that is hard to dig out of. My family saved me from that quagmire. Unfortunately, Ferret is on his own.