Charity Work Saves The Day! (FL) “DAY 249” – 3/10/11

March 12, 2011 - 10:00 am - (FL) “DAY 249” - Week 36 - State 32

For the first time since I left New Jersey 249 days ago, I woke up this morning and I wasn’t happy! 🙁  I don’t know why I’m not able to shake this feeling, but the same way I felt before I went to bed last night is the same way I felt when I woke up this morning.  Oh no!  I gotta snap out of this somehow.

The good thing about this morning is that I really don’t have time to sit around and wallow in my misery because I have charity work to do today at the Miami Rescue Mission.

Finding The Miami Rescue Mission (MRM)
My shift for the day started at 10:30-ish am, so I left G’s at 10 am to head a few miles away to where the mission is.  The problem... there always is... I can’t find the right building!

I drove to at least 4 different buildings that said MRM on the front but nobody knew who my contact was or where I could find her.  After talking with numerous different people and checking everywhere I knew to, I got back in my car even more bothered about my already lousy day. (I was ready to give up and go back to G’s).

Then, as I was actually sitting in my running car ready to leave, one of the people I just spoke to ran over to my car and said, “Oh, I’m sorry I know where you can find Sharde (volunteer coordinator), her office is right over there upstairs.”

Meeting Sharde & Labake
By the time I arrived in their office, I was so frustrated with life that this again... was a first for me on this trip as I wasn’t visibly excited to be there. (My personality seems to be shut off right now.)

There are times in life when I believe that things happen for a reason and I think today was one of those days because Sharde and Labake were exactly the right people I needed to be around feeling the way I did.

Being that I almost always wear my heart on sleeve (I don’t know how to be the sad clown), the girls could immediately tell I wasn’t in a great mood.  So, instead of them just getting a miserable person out of their office, they decided they would cheer me up!  People are so awesome!

Getting Myself Mentally Back
After hanging with the ladies for a little bit while I filled out paperwork, they found a way to turn my frown upside down. 🙁 🙂 (I can’t believe I just used that phrase.) LOL 😉

I don’t know if it was their positive energy, their radiant smiles, or just the fact I was about to help out people less fortunate than me, but by the time I left their office, I was 100% back to Roostertime!  Thank you ladies!

A Tour Of The Entire Facility
Before I was ready to get my hands dirty, the ladies found Dennis (executive assistant for MRM) to give me a walking tour of their whole facility here in Miami.  And, as I already found out earlier when I was lost, this place is real big!

So, for the next hour or more, Dennis and I walked the whole MRM as he told me everything they offered to the needy people of Miami and beyond. (They have other offices up the coast of Florida too.)

During the tour, he also showed me the women’s facility (which houses abused women who have kids), the thrift store where they sell all types of items that were donated to the mission, the food warehouse, and much much more.

F.Y.I. - So far on this journey, I have done countless days of charity work in numerous different cities, but this place is by and away the most efficient facility I have worked at yet.  I say this because everything is put to use and nothing is wasted.  Nothing!  Not to mention, their goal is to rehabilitate every person who enters their program.  Nice! 🙂

The Recreation Center
Since the MRM is a faith based organization, they get no outside funding from the state (separation of church and state).  So, everything they have and they have a lot, is donated by the great people of the country.  Amazing!

That’s not even the best part, directly across the street from where the MRM’s food warehouse is/was an open lot.  I say “was” a open lot because it’s not an open lot anymore.

After praying for many years for somebody to help them turn that lot into a rec center, low and behold... somebody anonymously donated 1 million dollars to the MRM just for that reason!  Anonymous!  Are you kidding me!

I feel like I’m watching the episode of “Curb Your Enthusiasm” where Larry David gets mad at Ted Danson for anonymously donating money.  But then, Danson tells everybody he was the anonymous donor anyway so he could get the credit but still look cool for not wanting any. LOL

My Tour Ends
After walking around with Dennis for over an hour, we were finally finished with the tour.  I told you this place was big (they have 6 or 7 buildings they use).  Since we were gone so long, my lunch shift in the kitchen was almost over.

So, instead of working a half-shift at best, I asked if I could come back again tomorrow to do a full one.  By this time, I was part of the MRM family so it was no problem as I got scheduled for another day (tomorrow, Friday).

Meeting Casey Angel

The ladies in the office liked my story so much that they alerted their media department’s manager so he could meet me and see he if wanted to do a radio interview with me.  Nice! (The MRM has it’s own radio station where they broadcast daily to over 250,000 listeners.)

Anyway, Casey was a real cool guy who I instantly got along with.  Maybe it was because he was in radio (as I was), or because he was an elite athlete (center fielder for UCLA in college), or maybe because he was just a good guy.

Either way, I got along with Casey as if he was an old friend.  So, needless to say, I enjoyed his company. 🙂  Also, Casey must have enjoyed my tale as well because he invited back to his studio to interview me when I return tomorrow.  Thanks Casey!

Leaving For The Day
I was enjoying the company I kept so much today, that I completely lost track of time.  So, before I even knew it... it was time to go.  I didn’t do any physical work today but I did learn a lot about the MRM and everything they do.  Tomorrow, I’ll get hands dirty. 😉

More so than anything, I’m just happy to be back to me!  And for that... I thank all the great people I met today at the MRM.  It was their positive energy and helpful nature that pulled me out of the dark forrest.  Thank you all so much for everything you do on a daily basis! 🙂

Unbelievable Graffiti Artwork
As I was driving to the supermarket before I went back to G’s, I spotted some of the best artwork I have seen all trip long sprayed all over a brick wall on a side street in Miami.  It caught my eye so much so, that I had to pull over to take some pictures.

The title of the artwork was “Orginal Gansta” and I have seen a poster like this before (kinda) but not spray painted on a brick building 25 yards long.  This was an amazing sight!  The details were specific that I couldn’t even pick a favorite villain as they all looked so perfect!

Back To G’s
After stopping at the supermarket to get some food, I got back to G’s around 4 pm and started writing my Wednesday. (I could actually write this day now that I have gotten my mind back to normal.) 😉  Thanks again MRM!

The Heat Game At 7 pm
When G got home (after 5 pm), our plan was to go to the Heat vs. Lakers game right across the street from where G lives.  The problem... Heat tickets are insane to get.  For example, face value for an upper deck ticket is $100 and those are the nosebleeds.

Anyway, I told G I would go down and see if I could do as I have done for this entire year and get us some free tickets.  Yes, I’m aware how hard it will be because: 1.) Heat tickets are prime this year.  2.) The Lakers and Kobe are in town. 3.) I’m not looking for a single, I need a pair.

Trying To Get Us Tickets

Knowing the odds I was up against, G decided to help the cause by handing me a $100 as well.  He did this so I could even buy two tickets if the right deal came along. (I didn’t think I’d need all $100 but hey, it’s more of a budget I’ve had by 250% per ticket.)

Walking Around The Stadium

It didn’t take long for me to realize that getting a pair of tickets for this game tonight wasn’t gonna happen!  The cheapest pair of tickets I was able to find was $300.  And that was after a hard negotiation.

Still, I kept trying and I did find a single for $50, but that does me no good as I need two tickets tonight.  It was now 7 pm and still... the ticket prices didn’t drop as the scalpers knew this was Miami and people love to show up fashionably late.

Back To G’s Place
The walk really only takes 2 minutes, so before tip-off even happened at 7:05 pm, I was in G’s living room watching the game on TV.  Our plan now, was to wait until the 1st quarter ended and then go back to the stadium to see if prices dropped.

Trying One More Time
Since the game was already underway, I figured we would have at least have a fighting chance now.  Well... I was wrong as this time... the problem was finding the scalpers.  They weren’t where their were before the game started.  Oh well, I tried! 😉

Watching The Game At A Bar Instead

Since we were already outside on the street, we decided to go watch the game at a bar instead sitting in G’s place for the night.  Neither one of us was really in the mood to drink this evening, so our plan was just to watch the big game where there was some atmosphere and then call it an early night.

An Irish Bar
Instead of going to the same bars we have been going to, G got us a cab and took me to a different part of town (5 miles or less away).  Like I just said, it was close, so a few minutes later, we arrived at Brickell’s (an Irish bar).

Even though the plan wasn’t to drink that much, you know how things happen and before I knew it... I was doing shots of Rumplemintz all night long.  G on the other hand, was just drinking a few beers calmly.  Ahhh, the roles are reversed tonight! 😉

Meeting Our Bartender (Haley)
For the entire time I was there, I talked with our super hot bar-tending butterfly (inside joke) about anything and everything.  We talked about my journey, Miami, her life, as well as how a girl with a body like this doesn’t work out at all!  Are you kidding me! 😉

Anyway, not only was Haley beautiful, but she was super cool too.  What a combo!  I asked her if she was in love (no way’s she’s totally single, so I figured I’d just ask if she was in love), and she said she wasn’t. (She likes to be free like a butterfly.  Ah ha, the inside joke.) 😉

Leaving The Bar
By the time G and I left the bar, Haley and I had exchanged emails so I could send her the pictures I took of her during the evening (she wanted pictures of herself at work because she had none).

But, before I left, I told her if she ever wanted to date me (even if this book makes me rich and famous), she Grandfather’s in as she liked me before I became anything.  (She joked and gestured, what if she was pregnant? I responded, "If the father's not in jail... I'm still in! 😉

And... she is aware of what I have now as she playfully called me a traveling hobo.  Hopefully, that’s flirting for I love you! LOL 😉  Nice meeting you Haley!  I hope you have a great life and get everything you want!  Fly butterfly... fly! 🙂

Back To G’s For The Night
I’m not sure how many shots I had, but by the time I got back to G’s place, I was drunk!  I wasn’t hurling drunk or loss of memory drunk, but I did have a nice buzz going.

I know I wasn’t sober because when I laid down t go to bed, I felt like I was on a Tilt-A-Whirl at a carnival.  The room was spinning!  Luckily for me, I didn’t throw up as I found a way to pass out before that happened! 😉

Thanks for reading!

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  1. Dad says:

    What’s to say but, Hello Haley !!!

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