After 3 hours sleep, it was time to move on.
I gently woke Paul. We need to get to Seattle.
We packed down & jumped James’ fence to save ourselves a half mile hike with the hippos. (His back fence divided his property from the shopping centre, but his drive was the scenic route to Egypt.)
On the way to the bus, we met Tod, an ex navy seal, who had fallen on harder times. He guided us to the bus stop, entertaining us well along the way.
Paul handed on Abshier’s money, which generated misty eyes for both he & Paul. After some more talk, Tod sank to his knees for prayer. His humility was heart jerking. He talked with us about life & the complications of getting out of a hole once you’re there, until our bus arrived, which he waved down for us.
On the bus we received help from locals regarding trains. Then on the train we had help as to the best place to get out of town.
We carried our hippos, which are now beginning to feel more like buffalo, for miles to a truck stop.
Along the way a car pulled over, a tray of 12 muffins extended from the window, then the car was gone.
At the truck stop, Paul went inside to buy some food, figuring as customers we would be able to at least sit outside for a few moments to eat his purchase. (He purchased a pound of Jerky…which takes some consuming. However, as he came out from his $14 purchase, security came & told us we were not able to be there, or anywhere on the premises or the street outside. They offered a lift to Vancouver however, but Paul didn’t like being ousted, even from a public roadside, & we decided to try our luck just down the street.
We sat there unsuccessfully for an hour or so, then headed up to the gas station, where we were able to give away the remaining 10 muffins, but not gain a lift, or much of a smile from anyone. It seemed the attitude of the truck stop was prevailing everywhere here.
We tried sitting on the roadside for a few hours, but had no joy, other than that created by the expressions on the faces of the military people who were continually driving by.
In a desperate attempt to get out of this depressing place, we walked across the bridge into the town of Vancouver itself. The one or so miles felt like 45. I was so tired I thought I was going to vomit, but all that came out was a tirade of abuse at Paul. (Abusing a monk is not as gratifying as I had hoped however & I felt no better for my purging.)
Just moments after that, we meet RJ.
I cant help but wonder if he’s an angel. Paul helped him get his ‘cars’ across the street, then we parked the trollys on the side of the path, sat in the grass & talked. RJ was truly an amazing man. With a mind as sharp as the ninja’s sword & a wit to match, our chat extended to over an hour. He told us about the street people in his area & pointed out a few spots for us to stay where the locals were kind & friendly, should we find the need later.
Finally we decided we should try for some more rejection & scowls, bid RJ farewell & put our thumbs out once more.
A monk can only take so much abuse & raised fingers & at 9pm, we were spent & decided to call it a night. We ate, then retreated to a ‘friendly’ bunch of bushes for the night. We slept like logs, cuddling our packs & dreaming godly dreams, undisturbed by either friendly or otherwise street people, despite sleeping in their den.
Tuesday, June 10, 2008
Posted by SocialMonks at 6:30 PM