I love a good documentary when I stumble across one. I think they're a phenomenal way to learn more about a particular lifestyle or get more insight on a certain event. Fortunately, Netflix has some great documentaries available so I take full advantage of what it has to offer!
My most recent documentary I found on Netflix is called Lost Angels. It's a heartfelt story of the homeless that reside on Skid Row in Los Angeles, CA. Having driven through the streets of L.A. and having seen these people first hand, I have always wondered about their stories. Where did they come from? How did they get here? How do they survive?
The documentary follows 8 different people and shows their lives living on Skid Row. While they all live or have lived there, their experiences are all so unique. One of the stories that really stood out to me, is that of Lee Anne. She's lived on the streets for over 20 years and carries all of her belongings (plus loads of extras) in a shopping cart that she takes everywhere. Although she is homeless and cannot fully take care of herself, she always has a bag of cat food and feeds all of the cats who also live on the streets of Los Angeles. Lee Anne spends her days doing as much as she can to keep herself afloat but is always looking out for the community that lives along side her.
Lee Anne often is seen walking around the streets with a tall gentleman named KK. Him and Lee Anne have a deep bond and really look out for each other. Although he was living in a shelter built to get the homeless people off of the streets, he spent his days walking Skid Row with his dearest Lee Ann. She thought of the streets of Los Angeles as her home and refused to go into any of the shelters offered to her. Surprisingly, a high percentage of the people living here would refuse any help from shelters. They have a strong community and that's just the way they like it.
From an outsider looking in, I was always under the impression that Skid Row was just a drug filled, violent and overall mortifying place to be. In reality, it's a family. While there is a high number of rapes, violence and drug use, a lot of the people there have built a community. They trust each other and work together to support and help one another.
Seeing this documentary made me so grateful for what I have. It is easy to take the life we have for granted. It isn't until you get a glimpse into the life of someone less fortunate that you understand just how good a lot of us have it.
While material things are great and it's nice to have a roof over our heads, there are some traits that these amazing people have that we sometimes lack. They aren't drug addicted, lifeless bums. They are human beings with a beautiful sense of what life is about. They make due with what they have. They're resourceful and appreciate even the smallest of things. Seeing people refuse help because they were content with the life they were living, was not only shocking but a huge eye opener.
If you haven't seen this documentary, I highly recommend it. I found Lost Angels on Netflix, but I'm sure there are other ways to see it!
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