Harry’s aim was to get Barney home. That was his responsibility, every Hobo felt that responsibility, make sure the children who showed up on the rails got back home. Life on the rails was not for children, there was no justice swifter and more deadly than any Bo that molested children.
That is what distinguished Bos from tramps and bums. Bums never worked, stole, and most times never freighted and had no morals.
Tramps, Harry once explained to Barney, will work but only if they are forced to. Bo’s always work, they don’t take money or foodiffin’ they don’t work for it. It is a matter, he said of dignity and dignity and justice is part of the Bo life.
Bos don’t steal, don’t threaten, don’t invade peoples homes and if a Bo turns bad they is thrown under a moving freight. Simple as that.
Bos pride themselveson being clean, take care of one another, and always make sure that they don’t spoil it in any town for the next Bo that might be coming through.
Harry had started to tell Barney about how to read all of the Bo signs that only other Bos could read.
Barney was eager to learn but Bo was bound to take him home. Same was true for girls and women a Bo might encounter on the line. It was dangerous riding, freezing freight cars, starving, getting jumped by tramps and bums and even dicks, that took advantage of womens that rode.
A Bo couldn’t stand for that. That is why many carried crow bars, useful in a fight and useful if a dick tried to lock you in a boxcar, to freeze on your ride.
Bos were the best Harry assured Barney, they’s got organization, jungles near every big railroad stop where they can find comradery and help with food and places to sleep.
With that, he told Barney to try to get some sleep since the dicks outside Chicago would open freight doors random and try to collar you or black-jack you, or failing that, might try to lock you in forever.