26 June 2014
This morning CNN reported finding a 12-year-old boy in his father’s basement. The boy had been missing for 11 days, the report stated. During this period the Detroit Police, the FBI, the father, and the mother had searched the house and basement. He was health and clean. One a ensue that was not addressed was the adults had jobs. They weren’t there everyday, every hour.
This event caused me to focus on an incident that occurred six or seven years ago. I was attending a weekly wring group north of Dallas, a group composed of adults young and old. One evening a lad, a sophomore in a Dallas High School visited our group. He brought something share, something well beyond his age level, we were to soon learn.
The lad, whose name I’ve forgotten was a gifted writer. He already displayed talent for which I could only hope I lived long enough to achieve. To add to that gift, he was researcher.
He wondered what it was like to be homeless, to not have dinner ready at an appointed hour, to not have someone making his bed and picking up after him, to have no television, or an endless source of clean clothes. To answer that question he ran away from home.
For three days and night he rode the Dallas Area Rapid Transit System (DART), disembarking only long enough for food, water, and pit stops. During this period of time he avoided encounters with DART Security At the of this experiment, he returned home.
“I’ve always been a person who tries things out for myself, then reporting my conclusion in the school newspaper, of which I am an editor and columnist,” he told us.
“Being homeless is hard,” he said. “Though I was alone, I never had any privacy, other than when I was occupying a stall at one of the BART bathrooms. At the same time no one seemed to care that I was riding the rails at three o’clock in the morning. Then, when my experiment was completed and I returned home to compile my conclusions I learned that no one had actually. Missed me!
“It’s true, my life is lived with minimum supervision. My folks aren’t surprised to find my bed vacant at breakfast because I’m at a city lake bird watching, taking notes about the. Eating habits of cardinals.
“While I enjoy my freedom, my ability to vanish for three twenty- four hour periods changed the jest of my article from homelessness to the security of home life.