Sunday, October 14, 2007

"Where has Elana been?"

It is still true that I am barely leaving the house.    If I leave the house between 8 a.m. and 6 p.m. on a weekday I'll be burglarized. Every day I find something else that has been stolen.

  I have just gotten over a debilitating headache that I had for 5 days. It's excruciatingly painful to sit for more than 10 minutes in anything but a very well cushioned sofa (I need some serious chiropractic care but don't have a car to get to the chiropractor)

I can't take the bus after dark (6:30 p.m.) because the streets and the buses are so dangerous. So the ramifications of leaving my house on a weekday are very, very high. In the meantime, I started an aggressive and alternative housing search about 6 weeks ago. I've only interviewed 2 people so far face to face. Both interviews were for the purpose of renting rooms in someone elses house. One person has a house in Middle River (there is nothing I can walk to in his neighborhood) and one person lives in an area so safe he doesn't lock his doors,(Chestertown) but I had strong concerns about the personalities and lifestyles of these people so I didn't accept either situation. For as horrendous as my situation is, I need to remember that it was also horrendous before I got my federal subsidy, so I have to be very very careful. I am still considering intentional community. ( and

I have to find somewhere that is cheap enough that I can buy a car and get back to work. You already know that I have some Baltimore city fines that will seriously delay me being able to get a car while living in Maryland. Ironically, one of the fines is for 800 dollars. It started out as a fine for 32 dollars and I didn't have the 32 dollars. I was parked in a 2 hour parking space near hopkins university (in 2003) and overstayed my 2 hours by about 10 minutes. The other city fine is because while I was homeless in 6/03 my honda was broken down in balto. city and I didn't have any friends that I could tow it to (to store for me while I get the money together for the repair) So, the city towed it, impounded it and sold it. They are charging me about 900 for all of that. They ended up auctioning my honda off for 15 dollars. That's right folks, 15 dollars!

As my Urbanite article suggests, there is no joy in living, but I do still have a glimmer of hope.

The only good news is that I have pretty good health insurance (which I risk losing by going back to work)and have an MRI scheduled. They are checking for lesions on the neck part of my spine, as my neurologist suspects that might be why I have the numbness , pins and needles in my extremities. Miraculously, insurance will cover every penny of my visits to the neurologist and the tests and on a pretty day I can walk there in about 75 minutes.

It's quite the balancing act to try to get ahead financially once you are on disability. When I lived in Indiana, (from 03 to 05) I fell behind in my rent and was evicted (in 04) As a result the social security administration reduced my monthly benefit to 200 dollars a month. I was shocked. They didn't give any warning at all or any letter of explanation. When I asked them about it they said well now that you are homeless you aren't paying any rent so you don't need the extra money, that is why we reduced your check!

Speaking of sick societies, I can't wait to see Michael Moore's new movie "Sicko" Have you seen it?

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