Hurray For The Bug People Across The Lot
The last eight weeks watching a homeless couple desperately fix their bug has been painful. Day after day, the husband, I saw the man, in his mid to late fifties, bent over his car, working tirelessly to fix it. Every few days, a friend with a truck would stop by and the two men would go off, I assume, to scrounge around for parts. The wife would remain behind, arranging and rearranging their belongings.
Every so often, she’d come by my building to use one of the electrical outlets to charge her phone. On one such occasion, she confided that they were waiting for her check to buy an expensive part. They were going to use the rest to pay for a few days’ stay at the hotel. Some respite after weeks of living in the tiny car.
The weather has been brutal at times, these past few weeks. California has seen more rainfall this winter than the last several years combined. This couple weathered it in their broken car.
Her husband lost his job at a car dealership. He’s a mechanic. They used to live in LA. The rising rents and his job loss chased them to the suburbs. They’d been looking for work around my parts when the VW bug broke down. Out of desperation, when he lost his job, her husband had sold their truck and his tools and bought the VW. They were going to live on the truck money while he looked for work.
I happened to be outside tonight when as the VW’s engine roared to life for the first time in eight months. Success, and not a moment too soon. The police were by this morning and they were given a stern warning.
Good luck, Bug people! Good luck!