Size 20 coat
All she asked for was a size 20 coat! Preferably warm and waterproof! I thought this rather odd, as the person needing the coat was a size 12.
‘She’s homeless,’ my friend told me, ‘she needs a coat for the winter! One she can hide in!’
One she can hide in! Those words haunted me all the way home from the market town of llandovery, earlier this evening.
I stopped for a while to watch the glow of the winter sun, settling down behind Paxton Tower in the distance. There was a chill in the air and I thought about the woman who needed the size 20 coat. At 67, my friend told me, she had witnessed the murder of her husband and some other family members. Traumatized, she made her way to our country in a ‘lorry’ for illegal immigrants. But despite her fight for survival, this incredible human being has lost her application for asylum.
Alone, with no family or friends for support, this lady, at almost 70 years of age is still hoping that one day she will have a home again, or at the very least, a warm and safe place to live in. For you see, the longer she lives on the streets, the greater chance she has of developing illnesses and being an asylum seeker, she receives no state support.
As I watched the pink sun dip behind the rolling hills of Wales, I wondered at the terrible past that woman had left behind. And despite the hardship she faces on the streets of Wales, she still sees it as a safer place than the one she once called home.
As I opened the door to our home for waifs and strays, I made a promise to myself that first thing tomorrow, I will buy (at the very least) a size 20 coat that is warm and fully waterproof!