New York City. Updates
Alan: When we came across Alan, we didn't quite recognize him. His beard had grown in wildly and his face appeared to have aged years in a matter of months. His demeanor, too, seemed weathered; a change that was most noticeable as he explained to us that he still had two months until housing would be available. It is important to note that he then gestured to the other of the street where his girlfriend sat; she, too, is now living on the street.
Jen & Robert: If you have been following along, you would know that this is actually the second update we have on Jen & Robert; you can see the first, here. We saw Jen from across the street, her sign covering her face. While we were immediately ratted at the fact that she and Rob were still there, we did find some comfort in the fact that they appeared to be well rested and taken care of. However, that comfort was soon replaced with displeasure when we heard about the situation they had found themselves in.
Long story short, a kind gentlemen had offered to pay for Jen & Robert's housing. He put them up in a hotel for two nights and in those two nights they were to find a place to live; which they did. They found a room to rent via Craiglist in a three bedroom house and while they didn't have an excess of belongings and slept on an air mattress, they were grateful. Their gratitude, however, soon turned to annoyance when they received an eviction notice. It turned out that the woman who rented them the room was not the landlord, but rather a renter herself and in order to make some extra money she was renting the rooms out; an action that is illegal in New York City.
So here they are. Again. On the street. Their belongings locked inside the room that they had hoped would be the first step in getting them back on their feet and a situation that would keep them from allowing us to pay for their train tickets to Maine right there & then. You see...although their belongings were limited, they were valuable and necessary if they were going to get their lives back in order (think: Birth Certificates). Therefore, in an effort to still get them our of New York City, we provided them with our phone number and asked that they call us when they retrieved their possessions.
A few days later we received a text message asking if we could still help them get to Maine. We responded to no avail.
Our fingers are crossed that they found their own way out & that in the next few weeks I won't be writing update #3.
Gerard: I could wax poetic about our second meeting with Gerard, but I think all readers would prefer that I just get to the point. At the time we saw him (and chatted with him for what seemed like forever), HE WAS JUST DAYS AWAY FROM GETTING HOUSING!
We did provide Gerard with a number to contact us on so that he could text/call when he got back on his feet. Until then we will keep all our appendages crossed & our phones nearby. #TeamGerard