Name's Annie. Annie Grace. But people call me "Snaggle-Tooth Annie", 'count of my snaggly teeth. Don't take long to figure that out once y'all see me. I'm a sight for sore eyes, y'know??
I live on the streets in Fort Worth, Texas. Once a month, we homeless (or transients) get together at a local church, where they feed us and pray with us. We can use a good hot meal and prayer; our lives have been anythin' but easy.
Like me. I lost my home 'cause I couldn't afford to pay the rent; got thrown out. Been livin' on the streets now for over two years; it's a life I wouldn't wish on anyone!
I'm a widower; lost my husband twenty years ago; he had cancer. He suffered bad; there isn't a day that goes by where I don't miss him! Have no kids; maybe that's a good thing, 'cause then they wouldn't have to feel ashamed, knowin' that their mama is homeless and livin' on the streets.
I have made many friends at the homeless shelter where I go to just 'bout every day: Vet-Man. Charlie-The-Crazy (although he's tetched in the head). Q-Man. Eek (though he is dead; durn fool ran out in front of a car; he got smeared into the pavement; he didn't have a chance). Shoeless Joe (he died, too). Gracie-The-Bag Lady (she died as well; she died on Easter; several of our friends found here dead on the streets, across from Barnes And Noble here in Fort Worth, downtown). Rica. Manuelo. Ryan. Cardelia and her children, Rosca, Emilia, and Eduardo Panchito. They are among my closest friends; we've since become tight, like a family.
I am in fairly good health, even for livin' on the streets; have bad teeth, though. That is why they call me "Snaggle-Tooth Annie". Can't afford to get 'em fixed. Don't even get SS; used to, but then I ended up on the streets, an' I no longer have a valid address, so the checks stopped coming. So now I have to rely on my wits just to survive or get a decent meal.
I've also become friends with some of the church folk, who help us out by giving us clean clothes, money, even somethin' to eat. God love 'em; most other folk just pass us by and look at us with dirty, disgusted looks on their faces; that hurts my feelings! We are not garbage; we are people too, just like they are! It couldn't hurt to give us a little money or something, just so we can feed ourselves or try to get something nicer to wear!
Well, I gotta go: the van is here; we're meeting at the church for another hot meal and prayer session; then we might go to the library. I always enjoy that; there's nothin' more I enjoy than lookin' at the books and wishin' I had me a library card, so I could check one or two out! Take care and God bless; remember us poor or homeless people in your prayers, 'kay??
~Love, your friend in Texas, "Snaggle-Tooth Annie". :)
*to be continued.*