Monday, December 5, 2011

Reporting from On the Roof: Monday Afternoon

Louise and her laptop
It's an interesting place. Sitting up here on the roof. The wind blowing the canvas. Hearing the traffic pass by. Sirens. Trucks gearing up, or down, or braking. Voices of people calling out, somewhere below 'urban sounds' as Christa, one of my tent mates calls it.

Dave sleepily nods his head when he hears her description. Yeah. Whatever. And his book falls onto his chest and his eyes close and for a moment he is lost to the world beneath the dome of a tent situated 30ft above the road, tucked into a corner of the roof of the old DI, the original shelter at this location which was no longer needed as a night shelter when the new building opened in September 2001.

"It's kinda like we're on Everest," he says, sitting up suddenly. "Outside, the wind howls, snow is blowing off the summit and we're waiting for a break in the weather to tackle the summit."
Louise and her laptop in the tent.

Two Tents on the Roof
Actually, we were hoping for a break in the weather to be able to erect the large six man tent, Camper's Village loaned us for the event. No such luck and in the end, we erect another domed tent so that those of us committed to spending the night have a place to come in from the cold. Sure, we could go inside, but that would defeat the purpose of being on the roof. And so, on the roof we sit.

It's been a good day. Lots of visitors. Media dropping by. People coming to say hello, check out our digs. We're laughing and smiling. From behind the glass of the covered smoke deck on the second floor of the DI, clients wave and laugh. They motion with their hands, spinning in circles, as if to suggest, 'are you crazy'?  I laugh and wave. Even do a little dance. Jumping Jacks. And then, I head back into the tent.

Bill and Nadine taking in the afternoon... chill
It's not all bad. We've got a space heater going. The kitchen team bring us hot tea and chocolate. A staff member drops off bottled water and a bag of salted nuts -- not sure if there was a suggestion of insanity in the nuts -- but the gift is very appreciated.

For the three of us who have spent the day together, tucked inside a tent, it's been a good day of getting to know each other, sharing in a unique experience, sharing laughter and smiles.

It's been a good day. Sun is beginning to set. The wind continues to blow. And we continue to raise awareness and funds for homelessness and the DI. Over $13,000 and counting. Thanks everyone who's contributed and tweeted and Facebooked and done whatever you can to increase the reach of our event. You rock!

Max waves from the smoke deck as Dave is interviewed by NUTV

Exec. Dir Debbie Newman &
Pres of Board Andy Lockhart check out the digs


Anonymous said...

thumbs up!

Anonymous said...

Cool Louise you go girl.

Valerie Kamikubo said...

WOW! Very cool, Louise!