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Hobos

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It wasn’t what he wanted.

Never in his dreams did he think he would end up on the streets. He should have known, with his unorthodox living style he was bound to be a homeless person. On a sunny Saturday, he sat on the warm concrete sidewalk in the midst of strolling people. Busy people. Happy people. He suddenly felt a pang of hatred for these merry passerbys; he blamed them for his own suffering.

However deep inside he knew that no one was to be blamed for his misfortune other than himself. It was he who wasted his high school career to alcohol and drugs and women. And here he was, on the streets of downtown Toronto, a city full of his kind.

He sat casually on the sidewalk. His pallor was a sickening white with unhealthy red spots around his hopeless dark eyes, which could be the result from days of grieving. Around his neck he carried an embarrassing big, white sign. On it read in black, thick, block letters “Living with HIV. Help.” He was HIV positive. The news came on month ago. It almost killed him. It would eventually, unless he had the money for treatments. But he could not even afford a place to live.

Pedestrians eyed him with sympathy and suspicion. Most of them ignore his existence and walked on as if Toronto faced no problems with the homeless. He looked up to the flowing stream of crowd with melancholy. He hoped that some martyr would take pity in him and help him. But he knew no martyrs except for the ones who resided in the churches.

He shifted on the ground. A strand of his long brown hair fell down to his eyes. He read his sign backwards and chuckled inwardly, bitterly. He thought he was such a fool, a fool with nothing but HIV virus spreading in his body. He was a stupid fool who was getting what he deserved. No wonder his parents drove him out of their house. They would be ashamed of a son like him.

A group of radiant young people walked past him. He heard one girl say, “Ew! What a hobo!” and the rest of the group laughed. He shot them a useless wrathful glare. He wished he was dead. He was indeed a hobo. A hobo in every sense. He felt he didn’t belong anywhere, he was another kind. He was not with the rest of the world.

He was in hobo land, where he and the other hobos all wished for another life.



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