This is Daryl's worldly possession and he trusted me with it today as he asked me to charge it up for him. It ain't flash but it's his and I am being careful.
Daryl has been living in the park for 3 days now and he told me today that he will be there until at least Tuesday, when he hopes to get some cash. It doesn't bother me that he's living in the park, except that it makes me feel like a right royal spoiled princess.
He doesn't make any noise about being entitled to anything and when I have popped out to deliver some rudimentary supplies he is grateful without being embarrassingly sycophantic. He was happy for me to give him useless info about a place that might have been able to help, but then later, presumably to save hurting my feelings, he told Stevie that the place I was trying to send him to had already told him they 'had nothing for him' to quote from Jeff on 'Survivor'.
So I tried again on the phones and have, I think got someone calling into the park tomorrow to chat to him to see if they can at least put in motion something better than a park bench. Daryl is OK with someone popping in for a chat, though I got the impression that he doesn't hold out too much hope.
His worldly possessions would not overflow 2 pillow cases - bedding and a jumper.
He's a funny bloke. When I took delivery of his phone to charge and he told me that it was OK to keep it overnight, I made sure that he wasn't expecting any calls.
Me: Are you sure the Queen is not calling tonight?
Daryl: No, she always calls in the morning.
The trouble is that there is so much homelessness on the Goldie, and I guess like anywhere resources are stretched to breaking. The bloke from UCC told me today that they have a priority order which counts down from single mums and their kids and abused women to kids and then finally old single blokes. He said that they just lurch really from one crisis to the next and he was a little affronted when I said that an older bloke living in a park for 3 nights sounds like a man in crisis to me. Truth be told he had probably spent the day dealing with stuff that would make my hair curl, and not in the go to the hairdressers and part with $100 bucks good way.
So who knows what the solution is?
Please don't try and make me feel guilty by reminding me that there is plenty of room here at the Big House. I know that already and yes the guilts are creeping in. But it just wouldn't be normal behaviour for anyone to invite some stranger into your home, I mean I don't deal well with anyone on a long term basis, except for Stevie cos he's immuned to me telling him to fuck off and giving him the silent treatment and burping like a banshee and whinging about stuff that compared to Daryl's woes are pretty lame and unimportant. Yep, he's used to my crazies and I am used to his. But even ordinary social folk would surely ponder the smarts of inviting every Tom Dick and Harry into their homes.
I do wonder where Daryl has been and where he will go onto next, but I don't want to be a nosey-parker and so our conversations have all been about the NOW. And I wonder about any family he might have and how they have let him slip away. He seems like a pleasant enough bloke, not at all a cranky pants. And he's got it together 'not to swear around ladies' even after I opened the flood gates.
I am really truly hoping that this is a very short story and that Daryl disappears quickly, not in a shitty get rid of him kinda way, but in a, he's found somewhere lovely to settle fairy tale kinda ending.