Last week the San Jose Mercury News published an article about the large numbers of homeless people who ride the 22 bus line all night long because they have nowhere else to go. It's come to be known as the "Hotel 22." All the stories are quite poignant, but the most heart-wrenching was that of a father and his ten-year-old daughter.
When passengers disembarked in Palo Alto, they only had to wait a few minutes before climbing on a San Jose-bound bus. On this trip, the father slept sitting up in a back corner. His daughter was lying over three seats, covered in a blanket, a backpack serving as a pillow.
The father was uncomfortable revealing details about their lives. But he did say that he's 40, has been unemployed and that he and his daughter, who is in fifth grade, are on a family shelter waiting list.
"She's managing, much better than I ever expected," the father said after waking her as the bus reached Eastridge at about 1:45 a.m. "I have no idea how she's doing it. This is one of her best years so far in school."
Obviously, this family has been on my mind quite a lot in the past week. I wanted to look into sending them money and I keep wishing I had space to put them up here.
Today, the Murky published a follow-up piece. Not surprisingly, I was not the only one who was so moved and fortunately many other people responded much more quickly. I was a little concerned that the initial story might cause problems for them, but just the opposite occurred. You can read about the outpouring of help they received here.
Sometimes I like people. Group hug.