He sits on the sidewalk on a raggedy blanket, and I buy him spaghetti. A market employee helps heat it and we sit on the pavement and eat together. Garry is from the South and loves rock music from the '70s and '80s. The radio on his shopping cart starts playing Miley Cyrus. He enthusiastically sings along, "I came in like a rainbow..." I smile and correct him. "She is actually singing I came in like a wrecking ball." Garry laughs, thinks I'm joking. He places his hand on my shoulder and prays a blessing over me. "I don't like talking to people much, but I like talking to you."
She has been living on the streets long enough to know everyone -- who to trust and who to stay away from. Like an older sister, she watches over me. She becomes my shield, my guiding angel. Being homeless for so long has given her a hardened exterior, but the way she takes me under her wing shows her softer side. As soon as she is sure I am safe she disappears into the night. Donna Monique, the self appointed "Hood Patrol."