Street Stories

Weblog of Seattle minister to the homeless Rick Reynolds, Operation Nightwatch

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Location: Seattle, Washington, United States

Caring for human beings seems like the best use of my time, homeless or not.

Friday, April 08, 2011

If you take up knitting after reading this, keep to dark colors!

Sometimes, late at night, I’m not feeling very good. The late night work often gets tacked onto an already busy work week, and can feel like one more thing to do. Sometimes I go out for my weekly visits, wondering “Why am I here” or some variation on the theme.

It was one of those ho-hum nights. “Am I really doing anybody any good?” So far, it didn’t seem so. I made a stop at a homeless encampment, I hung around Nightwatch. Maybe it was me. Maybe it was the endless drizzle. Bleah.

Then, I ran into a buddy in the south Lake Union neighborhood. He’s an old guy, getting around in a wheelchair. His explanation: “The Army thought it was cheaper to give me a $500 wheelchair than to save my toes.” There he sat on the street corner, in his wheelchair, in the drizzle. Bare-headed and bald.

“Hey, I got what you need,” I told him, fishing around in my bag for a LOLKC. (That’s a Little Old Lady Knit Cap, in case you were wondering.) This particular LOLKC was an atrocious color – baby blanket blue or something. Plus, it was pretty thin wool, a sort of open weave. “You know what? Here’s another one,” and I pulled out an olive drab LOLKC. “You put one on top of the other and voila. It looks like you are covering dreadlocks. . . "

“The girls are going to love this!” he said.

We both got the lift we needed.


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