My Crazy Idea

Linda and I went out for dinner last night with our friend Elissa ( bloody hell its sounds like we are a couple) but don’t worry everybody we’re not. Linda likes the other team too much. Damn it!

Anyway, off we went to dinner To the iconic restaurant in the area , so I’m told, called Tropicana Caffe. Which I must say I wouldn’t bother going to again. After dinner we went and picked up some yummy desserts from Kurtosh, which I will definitely be going back to. Then we headed back to watch the movie ” Flight “.

I was really looking forward to watching the movie, but I didn’t realise how much the main character’s problem with drinking would affect me and I had to stop watching it. The three of us sat out on the balcony while Linda and I had a smoke and as we had all been in Rehab together the conversation naturally turned to our day to problems. I had listened to Elissa’s story before in group, but last night something in it triggered something in me and got me thinking.

I feel shame, great shame for the things I have done in my past, but I also know that I must try to forgive myself.  I feel that I need to make amends,  not just to my wife and family, but also to the world. I know how crazy that is, but I want to spend my life helping other people and this is where my crazy idea comes in.

I have spoken and written about the four homeless men I have befriended and I really want to tell their story. The question becomes how can I do this by just talking to them. I can’t imagine what it must be like to sit there day after day, to sleep in a cave and to have to beg for a smoke or a few coins to buy something to eat. So this is what I’m going to do. I’m going to ask the boys if they would let me spend the week with them living on the street. I know this will only be a small insight in what it must be like, but I don’t know of any other way I can truly tell their story and I believe this is one way I can do it justice.  I hope this will help, by giving them a voice.


Words and Thoughts by Andrew Russell

Edited by James McAuley

2 thoughts on “My Crazy Idea

  1. Andrew, Mum and I think this idea is just that — Crazy! The last thing you need at the moment is to end up in hospital with back problems from sleeping on a concrete floor or uneven damp ground. Your main concern is to sort yourself out properly before worrying about other people — you can do those sort of things later if you wish. Also you can ill afford to be spending money that you haven’t got on people that you do not know. Please think about it before you commit to anything like this. Hope you had a good day with Kate yesterday. Love, Mum and Dad.


  2. Hey Bro,
    Glad that your having a great time with your friends up there, they seem to be really wonderful people & your all very lucky that to have each other for support, to share your thoughts, highs and lows with.
    As for your crazy idea! I think that at this stage it probably is. You don’t owe the world anything and as for family and friends seeing you this content and relaxed (if that’s the best way of describing it) is payment enough. You still have your journey to complete & it’s fantastic that you took the time to get to know them & that should be enough for now. I don’t know if you really need to sleep out on the streets with them or tell their story, they may not even want you too.
    Everyone makes their choices and they’ve made their’s, the same as you have and for the better in your case. If after a while you still feel the same then you do something to help other people. I know I might sound harsh but for now look after number one first. Having said that, if you feel that this is part of your journey and discovery of yourself then who are we to say no.
    Cheers buddy,
    PS Linda sounds like a wonderful friend.


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