Often while I’m walking The Streets of Calgary I come across many colourful characters and Jamie certainly fell into that category. I couldn’t help notice the bling he had hanging around his neck, as well as the two watches, the gold rings and other trinkets that adorned his person.
Dressed in a bright Orange hoodie, Jamie really stood out amongst the other people going about they business on a cold winters day on Stephen Ave. He was standing outside one of the stores sorting his belonging and swapping out trinkets. He seemed to have a small bag full of shiny things all mixed up in a tangle of chains and cords. He looked up and smiled as I approached him to ask if I could take his photo. One thing I’ve gained over the last couple of years, is a sixth sense when approaching homeless or other tough looking people. Often people will step aside or cross the street when confronted with such people, but I’ve found that most are just like us and friendly enough, if you show respect. Jamie was no different. He was more than happy to pose for a photo and seemed surprised that someone even noticed him. I explained that it was his collection of jewellery that had caught my attention.
Jamie told me that he loved collecting his bling and it was all real….”honest” he said. He went on to explain that he was “Between homes” and that hopefully in the next couple of weeks he’d be off the streets and better sorted. It was pretty clear that he was a bit of a hustler but then again, when you spend a lot of time living rough on the streets or working your way through Calgary’s homeless network of hostels and shelters, it’s to be expected. However, that said, once again I found myself chatting with another one of Calgary’s colourful characters and with that, we shook hands and went on our separate ways.