I hangout with the guests of Friendship Park about two or three times a month. We sit and talk and sometimes they will ask, “Hey remember the photograph you took of me? Can I get another one? I was rolled last week.”
I give the guests a small black-and-white print after I photograph them. It’s a physical object, something from their life they can share with friends and family.
The problem is guests get robbed or “rolled” a lot, as often as once a month.
Imagine you wake up blinking the morning sun from your eyes, looking around where you lay on the ground and slowly realize in a panic everything is gone: drivers license, social security card, bus pass, school I.D., medications, cash and family photos all gone.
The sum of your progress and forward momentum, to get out and away from living outside, eclipsed by bad luck and the ugliness of greed.
Boxing your way through each day you know theft will happen again. What will you do? Do you give up and give in or do you fight on and persevere only to wake up to know, as you sit alone, hope could leave your hands once more.