Every Thursday at about 10:00 am folks can get in line at the YMCA and pick up a box of fresh vegetables and fruit. The address is the Mid Valley YMCA at 6901 Lennox Ave. (Near cross-street of Vanowen), Van Nuys 91405. Their phone number for information is 818-989-3800. They have both a drive up line and a walk up line. Suggest you get in line around 9:30am.
School Kids, West Hollywood Food Coalition Send Love and Sandwiches to
by Uncle Paulie
The school kids of Los Angeles, working with the West Hollywood Food Coalition made over 3,000 sandwich bags for Memorial Weekend. We helped to distribute by taking a portion of the bags out to the Westwood Veteran’s Administration encampment. There are additional thousands of veterans living under bridges and on the streets of Los Angeles in other places. We implore the VA to provide some basic sanitary equipment here. It would be good to move them all onto the lawn, get bathrooms, showers, wash stations set up. Provide trash service and other basic necessities. Good citizens have stepped up and donated large tents for the veterans to live in until some housing becomes available. Please share this information and contact the VA and ask them to get off the dime had help these folks out.
Hundreds of Veterans Living in Tents at Westwood VA Facility
by Uncle Paulie
As our last video showed, hundreds of veterans are living in tents, both on and off the VA Facility in Westwood A group of Old Veterans Guard has been collecting donations and putting up nice tents for those in need. Our trip this week, with a carload of food, was interesting as there are even more tents on the inside and outside of the property than we saw on our trip last week. Those on the outside are not allowed in to use the washing or bathroom facilities. Conditions almost rival that of some battlefield situations where you at least would get food, water and rotation out. The veterans have organized their camp on the outside, and keeping it as clean as possible, removing trash, etc. They are doing the best they can.
We picked up a load of bagged sandwiches from the West Hollywood Food Coalition and the Salvation Army. These are complete lunches made by high school students and concerned parents. The official food banks are running low on food according to our information. A group we volunteer with, Earth Harmony Foundation, has seen it’s food donations fall by about 80% from the markets that donate “expired food”. The government food chain is tottering, and hopefully will not collapse, as thousands of folks depend on it. Here’s our video below, we hope to put up an interview with the Veterans in the next few days. Video by Julie Webster.
A Review of Her Backpack Contents and Tips For Extended Travel
by Adventurer Shashi Harrie
Video by Paulie Hunt
Photos by Julie Webster
Shashi’s Latest and Famous Backpack
Contents of Sashi’s Backpack.
Our dear friend Shashi was just about to leave for another travel adventure. She had been globe-trotting for over 20 years, living simply and mostly out of her back pack and a rolly suitcase. She has been almost everywhere, including Tibet and Latin America. This trip was to go back to India, seeking wisdom at her favorite Ashram.
Before she left we persuaded her to meet at a friend’s apartment and go through her entire backpack kit. Over the years she had refined the things she carried to get the lightest items, but also the strongest and long lasting items. I know that one of her favorite places was REI in Santa Monica for excellent camping gear. She agreed to share her experience and go through the items that she has found to be a necessity for extended travel and adventure. She caries a water filter, a rice cooker, and a device to grind nuts and seeds, because she will be eating mostly things she prepares and finds in even small villages, including rice, beans and fresh veggies.. Being on the road can be expensive if you travel like a rich tourist and stay in hotels and have all meals in restaurants. Shashi prefers to be on foot or bus and find a really cheap place to stay or camp and cook her own food. This savings allows her to travel constantly on a very small fixed income. She also works a little along the way, or trades services with businesses. She has fixed computers, done bookkeeping, is a licensed acupuncturist, a trained karate security guard, and many other talents.
Please enjoy the video below and following that some photos we took of her equipment. Notice that to keep organized, things are kept in cloth or vinyl waterproof bags and little pouches. For instance, the first aid kit is in one bag, toiletries in another, food prep stuff in another. That keeps everything organized in her backpack.
Note: The video below is only 16 minutes. We will upload the entire 50 minute version soon.
Shashi Harri (L) and Julie Webster
Big Fun Videographer Paulie with Shashi Harri
I am very sad to say that our dear friend passed away on her last trip in early 2019, due to being caught in a dreadful storm and getting pneumonia. We will certainly miss her calm disposition and great knowledge. This is her last gift to those who live out of their backpacks, by choice or by chance and hard times. She was so happy to share this information with everyone at gypsycool. Rest In Peace dear Shashi Harrie.
Word Camp Sends T-Shirts to Charity Volunteers and Homeless
Los Angeles Word Camp 2018 send a gift of brand new Word Press T-Shirts in various sizes to the great folks at the West Hollywood Food Coalition, which operates out of the Salvation Army kitchen on Hollywood Boulevard. The volunteers and homeless folks were thrilled to get new colorful shirts. The Coalition feeds 100 to 200 folks each week night.
How did this come about? Uncle Paulie, webmaster of GypsyCool.com and his partner Julie Webster went to Word Camp 2018 to learn some of the latest improvements in the world of Word Press. This took place on the campus of Cal State College in East L.A. on September 22-23, 2018. When the event was over Julie spotted a box of brand new T-Shirts that weren’t given out to the attendees, so she asked the organizers of the event tor the shirts to give to our friends at the West Hollywood Food Coalition and the Salvation Army in Hollywood. Uncle Paulie collects food from local markets and delivers to the Coalition to help feed those in need of a good hot meal. “We can’t do enough to help the great folks there,” he said. “They are working every day of the week to prepare good meals for those who need it, it’s on the scale of feeding an Army Company.”
The good people of Word Camp where more than happy to oblige Julie’s request and you can see by some of the smiling folks in the photo, it was a happy moment.
Getting Trader Joe’s Food Donation to the Greater West Hollywood Food Coalition in Hollywood – Uncle Paulie Has Been Delivering Truck Loads for 5 Years
Joe, Head Chef, and Uncle Paulie at the Salvation Army Kitchen
For the last 5 years Gypsy Cool’s Uncle Paulie has been taking van loads of food to the Greater West Hollywood Food Coalition operating out of the Salvation Army Kitchen in Hollywood. They feed up to 200 people every night Monday through Friday. On weekends they are back at the corner of Romain and Sycamore in Hollywood around 5pm serving dinner.. Paulie makes the long trek from the West Valley at least once a week to deliver much-needed food to Hollywood’s Greater West Hollywood Food Coalition at the Salvation Army. “Being retired I love helping to feed people who are hungry and need food. We also distribute food directly almost every night of the week, and help many other groups grappling with the suffering of seniors, homeless folks, students, and other poor folks who need some extra help and love,” said Paulie. The volunteer delivery crew, including Uncle Paulie, Bob, Wendy, Chuck, Chris, Julie, Judith, John, Judy, Kathleen and others, are all from the charity Earth Harmony Foundation.
Boxes of food donation from Trader Joe’s in Sherman Oaks.
Volunteers sort through the donations from Trader Joe’s Market in Sherman Oaks. Chef Joe will use this food with other donations and some purchased food to make enough meals to feed 100 to 200 folks per night. A great crew of volunteers help to sort, prepare, cook, and serve the meals. Help is always needed, show up in the afternoon to the Salvation Army on Hollywood Blvd. (near Gower). For more information, call Sheri at 213-703-9513.