From the December 2011 magazine.

Houston's Flower Man

With the help of AA, he went from living on Skid Row to having his house highlighted on the tourist trail

I was born and raised in rural Mississippi. Work was hard to come by, but finally I had a chance at a well paying job in California. My family put together enough money for me to travel by Greyhound bus, with a little extra cash to help get me settled as I began working in California. The bus trip included a stopover in Houston, and when given the chance to disembark, take a break, and get a glimpse of the big city, I did not hesitate.

During the stopover I met some friendly folks who invited me to share some of their Thunderbird wine. I drank another and another with those friendly folks. Since I had that extra money my family had given me, I was able to pitch-in so we could buy more alcohol and continue to enjoy ourselves. The next thing I knew, it was several days later, the bus had long departed, and I was left penniless in the big city.

-- Cleveland T.

Houston, Texas

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