Sunday, April 24, 2005

Shelter Report: Medford, Oregon

I got off a bus in Medford, Oregon recently and went to the homeless shelter with the intention of staying there for the night. I only wanted to stay there for one night. Period.

And after waiting far longer than I should have, I finally got in the front door. No thanks to the woman who was staffing the place that night. Oh no. The door was opened by a group of residents who were returning from some religious meeting.

Everything went pretty well until I went up the stairs and attempted to get ready for bed.

The staff person wanted me to hurry up because they turned the lights out in the dorm at [get this] 8:30 pm on the freaking dot!

Yup.

I tried unsuccessfully to explain to her that I had to re-arrange things in my big backpack in order to get my toothbrush and my next day's clothes out.

She got impatient and then I told her that I would do it in the bathroom. And I assured her that I only needed a few minutes.

At that point she told me to "drop the attitude" and told me to leave the shelter.

As a result, I ended up walking down a very dark stretch of I-5 with a flashlight. I walked all night...To a small town called Talent, Oregon.

A REAL Christian man picked me up there and took me to nearby Ashland where I finally got some decent assistance.

I am sending email to the City of Medford.

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