Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Day 2: 26 November (morning)

Good morning to you! As you can see i survived my first night's sleep on the streets. I am about to go eat breakfast at the soup kitchen but wanted to come and give you a quick report back before i eat. The soup kitchen doesn't open for another two hours anyways! We were up EARLY this morning!!! I am sleeping near next to the flower stalls on Adderley street with Wise Guy, and we had to be up before the people that sell flowers get there to set up. Wise Guy is 38 and has been on the streets for 28 years. He has ALOT of respect on the streets and knows the "routine" by now!

So, before i came here to live on the streets i had many people asked me if i was nervous or scared. I really wasn't at all, and definitely not for the reasons people thought i should be. I think people thought i would be scared i would get robbed, or stabbed, or whatever, but that really isn't a fear of mine. I did tell people that the only people i am concerned that might harass me are the police and securities, but so far i haven't had any incidents with them. There is one factor that i did not even think about however! Something that i am pretty scared of!

Last night, just as "sleeping" time was approaching, i was sitting talking to some of the guys and Shawn mentioned the rats. You know, in all my time in Cape Town, i have seen MANY rats, some HUGE ones that are more the size of small dogs, but for some reason, when considering living on the streets for 16 days, the rats did not even cross my mind. Shawn said to me, "Yeah, just make sure you keep your ears covered because the rats come and bite them in the night!". I looked around a bit and saw at least five rats scurrying around where i would be sleeping a few minutes later. That is when i realised that there is one thing i am a little scared of!! Wise Guy said the rats in Cape Town are pretty tough. When you stomp and make noise trying to scare them away they just stand up on their back legs and growl back at you! I am not a fan of rats of any kind, but most especially not gangster rats!!!

Anyways, i had a good nights sleep, with no serious confrontations with the rats, but it did remind me of yet another factor that makes the streets an unsuitable place for children! I will be back later to tell you how the day goes!

3 comments:

clare said...

I hadn't even thought about that - wow! So much respect to the guys that deal with that EVERY night, let alone in the freezing months of winter... thank you for doing what you do. you actions are a thousand words....

Beth said...

Your ears should be fine. You have always slept with your head covered!!

wangs said...

Yho Ryan i would have died! You remember how Yanga and i are with rats!!! indeed this drives home the unfairness of it all -to be harrased by poverty, abuse, police, security and then to top it off, by rats! I have a lot of respect for you Ryan, may the stand you've taken not be in vain in Jesus's Name or else it will stand as judgement against many on that Great Day