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Felix Lupa | The life of the homeless

PRIVATE 47, p. 60-61 (60-63)
PRIVATE 47, p. 60-61 (60-63)

Felix Lupa, The life of the homeless, from PRIVATE 47 – ISRAEL

[A] whole population lives on the street, a small ‘people’ seeks a country: lone wolves, couples, childhood friends, fathers and sons, mothers whose children were taken away by the social authorities and given to be adopted, alcoholics, drug addicts, schizophrenics, refugees from mental institutes, work migrants, refugees from normative society, and people who just prefer to live on the street in order to avoid paying alimony or heavy debts they are not able to pay.

Numerous groups roam the streets from one place to another, drop anchor for a while and go on to another place. Their number is constantly increasing, and friction is inevitable: sometimes the result is strong friendship, more often hard violence, sometimes resulting in death. Life rushes at them, hits them wave after wave, and they try to grasp at anything with a semblance of stability, even though for a brief moment; one moment they make a step forward and next they go back two. ‘Every ship struggling in a raging sea wants to cast anchor once in a while’ one of them once said to me.

In my attempt to understand I befriended many homeless, individual and groups. This report tells the story of a group of homeless alcoholics of Russian origin who lived for several months in a kind of commune in an abandoned house in the center of Tel Aviv.

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