I had to fight for this spot, lucrative, some would have said.
Not when you’re here it’s not.
When I was outside Asda, it was better. I could at least blend in at the front, with my mongrel Milly. Families with a few pennies to spare, or even a sausage roll from the restaurant inside.
A hot cup of tea, coffee, or even soup.
They would bring out tins of food for Milly, and she loved the attention she got.
There was always a spot I could find shade in too – just by the air vents, which blew out warm air on a bitter night. The frost don’t half sink right in my sleeping bag; where I sleep now. No more food, just people in expensive clothes, buying expensive watches. Their Rolex could give me a home to live in, yet they throw their money around like they are pennies, not pounds.
I’m one of the lucky ones, and I’m thinking, maybe I could do with a move. Somewhere with food, and sustenance for Milly. She is getting old now, and I’m scared I’m going to lose her.
Another person walks by, stares at me, with that look. You know the one, where there is a funny smell from somewhere. Inside, they point, grumbling about me being there – no doubt.
I roll up my sleeping bag, attach the rope to Milly’s collar, and I’m on the move again. Perhaps I could get arrested, a warm bed for the night? It isn’t worth it – they will take her away. She’s all I got, is Milly, keeps me safe at night.
Nobody goes near me with her protection.
I find a cosy spot, just outside Greggs – a young woman, walks inside, and hands me two sausage rolls and a cuppa. She looks down, strokes Milly and smiles. ‘Thank you,’ I say, returning her gesture. ‘Have a nice day.’