Should I Rent A Room?

I can afford to rent a room for, say, $400/month + utilities, but I’ve been reluctant to. Every time I’ve done so in the past it ended up disastrously.

Room 1: Lasted 6 months. The renter wanted “a little more” from me than I was willing to offer. When he saw I wasn’t putting out, he came up with this crazy concoction – his Polish cousin was coming to town in three days and he needed my room so I had to go. lame.

Room 2: Lasted 3 months. This were going well with my Irish roommates; suddenly, the landlord sold the house, so all us tenants had to bounce. Lame.

Room 3: Lasted 1/2 month. It was at this woman’s house. She had more rules than the Gestapo so I bounced.

Room 4: Lasted 2 1/2 months. This was at the crack motel on Beach 116th St in Far Rockaway, Queens. I had attempted suicide. Loneliness and drug abuse will do that to ya.

I’m reluctant to take a room somewhere, even if I have my own private entrance and/or bathroom, because of the plethora of rules hiding in the woodwork. People don’t tell you up front what their desires are – they’d lose potential renters that way. They simply spring the cold, hard truths on you later on, and they’re never pretty. I’m not aggressively going to hunt for a room, though. If one comes along, that’s fine, otherwise I’ll just hold out for a subsidized apartment in Port Townsend.

Speaking of PT, I was going to drive up there this morning and spend a few days, maybe sleep in the shelters or my car. They’re not as lenient about street parking as Seattle, though. Here, you can leave your car in the same spot for 72 hours. In PT, it’s 24 hours. BTW, I’m reluctant to spend the few days in PT, even though I really should, because the ferry to get there cost $15 each way. That’s pretty dear when you’re on a fixed income. If I don’t get a room soon I’ll probably go up there after I receive my laptop battery from Amazon and Jefferson County Housing Application in the mail. In other words, perhaps Wednesday or Thursday. Oh, yes. I can’t wait to be free like a bird, flying high in the (supposedly) friendly and artistic skies of PT.

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The Homeless Problem

News media outlets cover the plight of the homeless in their tabloids every day, presenting to the world all kinds of statistics related to the downtrodden and un-domiciled. And, you know, when you’re in the midst and thick of it as I am, you can get pretty cynical in regards to how the government is actually working to end homelessness. Here in Seattle, the attempt is a joke. To wit:

In any jurisdiction, you call 211 for info. Their job is to steer you towards assistance. Right now, I won’t go into how ineffective they are, but after calling them up a few times, it’s pretty obvious the volunteers are clueless.

I was recently looking into CEA – Coordinated Entry for All – a system that’s supposedly in place to get people off the streets. I went so see them Thursday & Friday but was told I had to make an appointment through 211. So I called 211. They said I should try the CEA offices in the Central District because the Northgate Office I was looking into works by appointment only. Or, 211 suggests, I can always take a trip to the Redmond Public Library on Monday between 1 to 3 PM, but like the other CEA officers, I am not guaranteed to be seen because they operate on a first come first served basis. The 211 operator told me to call him back next Wednesday to see if any interview slots opened up. Now, I don’t mind sleeping in my car, but suppose i didn’t have it. Where am I to sleep for the next frigid weeks? Shelters are filled up around town and public parks kick you out from 11pm to 4am – perfect sleeping time.

The Homeless Problem is getting no better in Seattle. Maybe I should try homelessness somewhere else, like Port Townsend or Port Angeles. Now, that’s an idea.

I’m Back In Seattle Again…But Still Homeless.

Redneck Wedding

Oh, well. I guess I’ll never learn. I was pretty busy today, setting up my life in Seattle again. Gave me something to do. I also contacted a woman re: subsidized housing in Port Hadlock and Port Townsend. She’ll be sending me the application this week (I receive mail at the Ballard Food Bank) which I’ll fill out and return to her as quickly as possible. She says the wait list is around six months. Not bad. I can sleep in my car another six months. Piece of cake. Too bad the subsidized housing here in North Seattle has a wait list of, like, 2 to 5 years and beyond. Pretty ridiculous. Can you imagine the large number of people with SSI or SSDI living on the street who can easily afford a subsidized place for around $250 – $400/month? I know I’m not the only one. In any case, mentally, I feel much better than I did up in Forks. Too bad it didn’t work out there. At least I know now, first hand, what it feels like to live in a freezing cold trailer in the winter time. Man, those things are just impossible to keep warm in! And with all the loose dogs around the trailer, I was like a prisoner in my own home. And don’t even get me started on the rednecks! (Yes, I dress like them now, but it’s not like I have a durn choice!)

Bye, Forks.

Well, that didn’t take long. I told my landlady, through my realtor, that I’m not happy in Forks and wish to break my lease. She agreed; now, I can leave any time. There’s a trailer for $40K I was looking into in Port Townsend, but since I don’t qualify for a personal or home loan from my bank, I may have to end up going back to Santos Housing, the transitional shelter in Seattle I’d just left three months ago. At least I gave it a shot. Forks isn’t conducive to my mental health at all; in fact, it’s been downright depressing these past couple of months. Everything works at a snail’s pace here. The operative word is wait – wait for this, wait for that, wait for the other thing. In the meantime, you just sleep to pass the time. That’s what I did. I accomplished nothing – no writing, no blog entries, no walking. (You can’t freely walk around here because of the large amount of dogs strolling about loosely). It was costing me a fortune to stay here, too, as everything had to be paid for – electricity, gas, heat, mailbox, garbage disposal, internet, etc. I went from $405/month at Santos to about $1,000 a month here, and I was happier at Santos! Hey, at least I gave it a shot. Tomorrow, I’ll call up Santos and ask to go back. Hopefully there’s a room available. If not, I’ll just look for another transitional shelter somewhere. I’d stay in my car but it’s a bit cold for that.