Port-A-Potty Appreciation

Personal Journal From Three Days on the Streets of Tucson

Three blocks to the nearest bathroom. Type: port-a-potty. Luckily it doesn’t get locked at night.

Sleeping on a military type cot placed on the sidewalk in the guts of downtown Tucson. Lucky luxury.

Signs on each corner, Broadway and Church and Broadway and Congress. One reads Here Comes That Creamer, announcing time and place for the documentary about solutions to homelessness.

The other sign simple states, “22 veterans committee suicide every day in America.” Attached to the sign is an American flag. It’s Saturday, it’s windy and the flag is unfurled flying true and waving at the people in cars.

We are out here to pass out information, water, clothing and blankets to those who need them.

The wind is strong. More than twice we chased the magazines, postcards and loose clothing across the Veinte de Agosto park which is supposed to be closed. At night skateboarders use the steps by the fountain to launch themselves into the air and take videos.

In the dark night we hear the buses, cars, motorcycles and pedestrians pass by as we lay on the God send cots to sleep.

I’m laying here, concerned about how vulnerable and exposed I am to everyone passing by.

Finally around 3am the streets get quite. Just enough for us to sleep. The freezing air finds any way it can to whisk inside or coverings and bite us with its cold teeth. The night disappears as the day light grows and wakes us up.

Off the cot, a run to the port-a-potty and back then tear it all down and pack it away. Home again, home again.

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