In 2011 I committed a crime that I knew would end in a jail sentence. My wife and I split up, and split our money up too, and I left the family home. I had decided to have a final fling and spend all my cash on one last holiday. So with about two thousand pounds in my pocket, and a full tank of petrol, I set off for my favourite part of the UK, Llandudno.
I had a great couple of days there before heading south, through the heart of Wales, and through Herefordshire, where I joined the M5, and went on to the South West, specifically, Perranporth. I spent about eight fabulous days there until my money ran out: This was when I became officially homeless.
At first I wasn’t bothered, as I fully intended to commit suicide, but, the comedy of errors surrounding my suicide attempts, convinced me that death was not part of my immediate future.
So I abandoned my car and set off walking. I spent the next three weeks wandering aimlessly around the Newquay and Perranporth area, eating discarded takeaways out of dustbins, or just begging for money outside bars and shops.
I made the decision to hand myself in to the police, but I wanted to do it up north, in Manchester, and, as I wasn’t thinking clearly, I decided to walk to Manchester form Cornwall.
What could possibly go wrong, it’s only 300+ miles! Needless to say I never got anywhere near the first 100. I had done about thirty or forty miles when I finally collapsed in a heap by the side of the A30 with total exhaustion. A very kind and concerned lady came to my aid and she called the emergency services.
As I was still covered in blood from my pathetic suicide attempt, the police were called to see if I had been attacked. They went through my wallet, and found my driving licence, and, when they called it in, discovered I was wanted my Greater Manchester Police. After receiving treatment, I was placed under arrest, and my brief spell of being street homeless was at an end.
I know it was only three weeks, but, it was such a struggle for me to get food, I completely understand the trials and tribulations of today’s homeless, it was my experience of homelessness that convinced me to join the Mustard Tree and hopefully help someone who is in the same situation as me.