Monday, May 7, 2012
An incredible story two fold. The characters are a homeless man and a sick and homeless cat. The story of a cat finding the man and the book they wrote. The story is true.
To start at the beginning, James’ has had many ups and downs, twists and turns that have influenced his life. His mother and father divorced when he was young. James’ mother, a career woman re-married and the family moved from England to Australia. As a youngster he attended several schools as the family moved frequently. As a result James had trouble fitting in with the other children. He was identified as a ‘problem child’ early in life and was diagnosed with ADHD, schizophrenia and manic depression. James did not like or get along with his stepfather and returned to England. He lived with his sister and her husband for a short time but this did not work out and James became homeless.
James has been homeless most of his adult life living on the streets, in shelters for the homeless and sheltered accommodation. Living rough in London, England for about ten years, James has survived by busking and selling the Big Issue, a street newspaper sold by the homeless in eight countries. He spent many years living in hostels and shelters and succumbed to drugs, Heroin being his drug of choice. Fortunately James was able to break the cycle of addiction with the help of his ‘some time’ partner, Belle, who was also former heroin addict as well as charities such as Connections at St Martin-in-the-Fields.
One of the greatest influences in James life has been Bob the cat who turned up on his doorstep one day. Bob has given James a reason to live and put his life back on track. The two were suffering and needed each other. On Methadone as part of his treatment to get off heroin James was struggling to survive. Bob was injured, hungry, and homeless. The most amazing part of this story is that Bob began following James to the areas where he did his busking and later selling The Big Issue. Naturally the pair attracted much attention, many pictures taken and videos on YouTube. Unbeknown to Bob and James, they were becoming quite famous. A result of all the pictures and videos came when a literary agent saw them and suggested James write a book, which he did in collaboration with Garry Jenkins.
A must read for all who love a heartwarming story, love cats and just want a good read.