“Sweet, Friendly, Girl”


Charlotte’s Story
Location: Intown Collaborative Ministries
Female, Age 42
“Sweet, Friendly, Girl”

Daniel Enger (Interviewer) Good morning today is October 25, 2021, and we’re here on Ponce in Atlanta. My name is Daniel Enger and I have the pleasure of being here today with Charlotte. Charlotte thank you very much for taking time to talk, I’m looking forward to hearing your story and to learning from you. My first question for you is a really big one, namely. Please tell the story of your life from the time you were a small child up to the present day.

Charlotte: From the time I was a small child up to the present day there’s no way to actually do this my family had a bunch of money and I had a nanny and so we flew around the world and I basically stayed with the nanny and we flew from place to place. So, I was actually born in France and I was actually born in a place called Middle Towns Loganville, Atlanta it was a great big name but it was in France a long time ago about the late 70’s or something like that. I flew around so much from place to place so my parents said we’re going to France. The last place I ended up overseas it was actually in Japan with the red-hot chili peppers their good friends of our family. Thank you for asking, I was actually raised by a nanny but thank you for asking.

Daniel: Tell me what brought you to Atlanta?

Charlotte: What brought me to Atlanta, I mean I’ve lived here all my life and we’ve gone to Six Flags with the kids and all this but recently I guess there was this death like called the Corona Virus and there was actually some things like tornadoes and floods. Some stuff like that, and some stuff actually happened to my little sub-division house and recently I had a newborn baby and my husband actually who I lived there with it actually got flooded and the walls were soaked with mildew. And I actually had some friends we kept tryin to get away and stay at a hotel finally couldn’t find a hotel to stay in cause everything was soaked with mildew and flooded so we actually were able to come to Atlanta and stay at some hotel. We had to fly in a helicopter, a small helicopter it was hard to get I had a friend that like had one and it was like really old and it was hard to get anything around here so we were in a small helicopter and like a few of the hotels so we were able to stay in Atlanta. And actually was eatin some hamburgers around Atlanta and stuff like that actually got stuck here again because of the Corona Virus cause at first we had tornadoes and floods where I lived and it was the only place we could come and stay in a hotel and after that the Corona Virus. And they closed everything down and they shut it down for a I don’t know it was like military law or something and I actually got stuck here so that’s the reason I was here. And I’ve actually left a few times and there were some other things like bridges fell down where I was tryin to go to and some really weird national disaster incidents that have happened so I ended back here I been here for like six months or somethin or seven months. I can’t get back home and there was a bunch of weird stuff that happened, so anyhow hopefully I get to go back home or something like that. And actually, my husband he’s still in the hospital he got pneumonia from the Corona Virus and he was trying to help but you can’t even get him on the phone yep so, anyhow thank you.

Daniel: Charlotte, thank you. Charlotte, of all of the things you’ve accomplished or overcome in your life so far what are you most proud of?

Charlotte: Of all of the things I’ve accomplished in my life I’m actually most proud of my son Dominic he actually chained himself to a tree recently in Winder, and it was because a friend had a goat and the town actually wanted to kill the goat to make hamburgers for the Burger King they were actually gonna do it. And then that was also because actually because of the Corona Virus the first time it came through not the most recent one and he actually chained himself to a tree he actually did save the goat and it actually did a lot of good. He actually went to Jackson to the prison because they claimed he was a murderer and they actually did pardon him for murder there but they actually did give him a lethal injection and a whole bunch of stuff. And that was actually he was 17 he turned 18 years old but he’s fine and he’s back home they actually some friends of mine that worked at PetSmart and Petco a long time ago when I was little and a girl name Rachael Brock and some other people actually come down there knocked the prison down in Jackson and killed a whole bunch of people and did a whole bunch of wonderful things saved a bunch of animals while the animal control did all these beautiful things for animals got my child took him back home actually they took him back home back to Ohio so he’s in Ohio now. So that is actually the most thing I’m proud of in my life is my recently turned 18-year-old son and the work that he is doing with animals and rescuing animals and the Los Angeles animal control, animal police, the Las Vegas animal cops, he’s been on tv on the animal cop show he’s done a lot of really good things so I’m super proud of my child. Super proud of this child his name is Dominic A. Nelson (sp) and me and my friends and our animal community is extremely proud of this child. Thank you.

Daniel: Thank you Charlotte. Charlotte, you’ve gained a lot of hard-fought wisdom from experiences in your life so far if you were invited to share your wisdom with school kids in your community giving them guidance to live healthy, safe, stable, and happy lives what would you tell them? What life advice would you give to school kids?

Charlotte: Give to school kids about what now?

Daniel: About life, you’ve learned a lot from your experiences what would you tell them?

Charlotte: School kids about life. I really don’t know I mean me and my kids live way away from other people by ourselves really mostly what I’ve ever really learned is stuff called bull crap that lives here and really you need to stay away from other people and their crap. Because really you need to be careful around strangers and that kind of stuff and be careful who you trust and that kind of stuff because really that’s what I’ve discovered there’s a lot of stuff called bull crap. and there’s a lot of strangers and people you can’t trust and a lot of things that you interact with that you cannot trust. So yeah, I don’t know how I would explain that to somebody I would try probably tell people not to be so trustful of other people, or trustful of situations, or trustful of anything at all really I don’t think I would trust much of anything at all. I’ve learned that I don’t think I would trust much of anything really, really as a kid didn’t know no better you know but I would say I wouldn’t trust anything really.

Daniel: Charlotte, in what ways would you say that your life is going well these days?

Charlotte: Goin well these days, it ain’t going well right now at all cause I’m kinda stranded and stuck in Atlanta but I’m hopefully some people are like helping me or whatever. And I do have like a couple of friends but it’s like hard to know people and they got into some trouble. So, what you ask me again sir.

Daniel: Could you tell me how your life is going well these days?

Charlotte: Oh yeah, it really isn’t going to well these days. Hopefully, it’s going well in the future I do miss my child I do have a child somewhere who’s like a baby, so hopefully I can get back with my child. I don’t know if I can get back with my husband, but I do hope I can get back with my child and at least get back home cause I do have a lot of friends back where I live at I do have a lot of friends. I haven’t really been able to make a lot of friends here but anyhow hopefully it gets better.

Daniel: Very good, thank you. You talked about some people helping you what led to you finding people that can help you, what led to that part of your life going well?

Charlotte: Okay people that could help me. Oh, I really don’t actually have any friends here so there really isn’t a lot of people that helped me really people have stolen stuff from me. I’ve had three cell phones get stolen, I’ve had about $20 thousand dollars get stolen cause my husband wasn’t always working as a HVAC  he was actually working on the side doing some jobs that made a whole lot of money and actually mailed it to me more than once, he didn’t know better than to send cash here because he’s never actually been to the city before he’s this country dude that does construction he actually sent me $10 thousand dollars cash in an envelope or tried to and this girl around here stole it of course. And then I couldn’t find anybody to ride me to the post office cause he sent it certified with the insurance on it and anyhow I couldn’t find anybody to take me so I just really nothing gave a crap cause it was all insured anyhow and I just couldn’t get a ride to the post office and I actually didn’t know where the Post Office was in Atlanta. So really there’s a whole bunch of money and stuff that got gone even my purse got stolen from me and my Bank of America Cards all got gone and even my mom came up here to actually try and help me here and couldn’t do it. And literally my mom brought me a birthday cake and like some dance recitals Barbie Dolls and stuff here cause she thought that I could actually live here. And some black person actually walks in and actually followed her from her house in Loganville all the way here walks around behind her just picks my stuff up like it was their birthday presents takes it back out and puts it in their car in the parking lot at the restaurant where we are and just drives back home with it. So, pretty much every things been stolen and it was really weird cause it was just like that literally they been watchin us the whole time and I wasn’t allowed to have it and they just takes it back home with it. She did call the police and they did go to jail for doin it but yeah, yep, yep pretty much everything’s got gone.

Daniel: I’m sorry. Looking ahead please Charlotte, when it comes to living a healthy, safe, stable, and happy life what are your hopes and dreams looking ahead?

Charlotte: Looking ahead actually I really want to get back to working at PetSmart and be the manager. They actually they got rid of it actually there’s a bunch of stuff that happened involving PetSmart and Petco and things where they did try to give people some social security and things like that what actually happened they got rid of my record because even though this is a wonderful place to work and I did know what I was doing there, I did quit without notice but there was reasons for this but they actually got rid of my record and they actually told me that I could go back to work there and I could be the manager there. So, that was actually my plan was to actually go talk to them and see if I could own one of the stores, cause I really wanted to own one of the PetSmart stores that was always my thing. My parents disagree with all this they think people should be rich and famous, but that was always my big dream to own one of the PetSmart stores really that’s what I was wantin to do before everything went to crap, I had intended to do that, one way or the other was to try to own a PetSmart store.

Daniel: Is that still your main dream? 

Charlotte: Oh yes sir, I mean I have other one’s but my one of my  main goals was to try to own a PetSmart store.

Daniel: What are some of your other hopes and dreams?

Charlotte: My other hopes and dreams, basically I still like to do dance recitals and stuff and I still have friends that do it they do little things they do some stuff on tv they do a few tv commercials and different things like that whatever you can come around in the community and stuff they do some albums and stuff I still play instruments and can sing a little bit and can play violin still electric violin and some things like that. I normally do stuff like that really around. I didn’t have no big dream they did still say I had some cancer and things like that but there’s no big dream around cause actually I’m home in a wheelchair cause really there was no really big dream as what to do and I did have a baby recently I have a child but yeah. 

Daniel: Charlotte, what are some of your personal strengths that you draw on as  you pursue your hopes and dreams?

Charlotte: Personal strengths that I draw on as I pursue things, I really don’t know I can’t answer that question really good. If you draw who wants to be a cashier at the Dollar Tree somehow there’s is a thing that you have drawn on and it does say cashier on your coffee mug and apparently somehow because your past experiences as a cashier you do have this thing called here’s a cashier only that does not involve you so somehow this is your dream. So, I don’t know if you can explain that but you can explain a cashier only and that is your drink somehow. But when I think about answering that question somehow there is a coffee mug that’s says cashier only and I try not to look at that anyhow that was a weird answer but there you go.

Daniel: It’s a good one. (Charlotte:  It is.) Tell me more about your personal strengths.

Charlotte: Okay my personal strengths basically I truly am disabled so I try not to follow personal strengths and things like that, I’m actually really disabled so I try to do whatever Charlotte does and take care of humans and that sort of thing but let’s see. I’m probably good at a lot of things I’m probably good at whatever my job is, I’m probably good at whatever I went to college for. But I really have never found anything that I really wasn’t good at, I was a really good wife, I was a good cook, I always took really good care of the kids, really good care of the pets, I really haven’t found anything that I wasn’t good at, yeah.

Daniel: Charlotte, tell me what challenges and obstacles do you see standing between you and your hopes and dreams, what holds you back?

Charlotte: Obstacles standing between me and my hopes and dreams. Here’s some weird obstacles I always somehow bump into things that weren’t meant for people with disabilities. I have a fake leg now and like normally everything’s okay but sometimes they’re not I end up bumping into the weirdest things that disabled people aren’t supposed to have a lot. And then I ended up with weird stuff like my husband tries to help me a lot and then I end up in weird situations a lot for some reason I end up like in tornadoes a lot, disasters, like fires a lot, I try to work with my husband before I came here and they dumped pookie on my head like literally it’s duct sealant I had a big bucket off the bucket truck scared the crap out of me burnt my eyes and all of it and we had to peel it off like balloons. But it just seems like I have a lot of accidents for some reason. I may as well just stub my toe and just fall over continuously the way this stuff works, because I have accidents continuously.

Daniel: Charlotte thank you for telling me about the challenges and obstacles that you face tell me what needs to be done so that those challenges and obstacles can be overcome so that you can realize your personal hopes and dreams. What needs to be done to overcome your challenges and obstacles?

Charlotte: What needs to be done to overcome challenges and obstacles. Really, I may just go home It’s easier for me to do things at home because everybody knows me and go to the bank and pretty much get my stuff back. But in the midst of that because while I was here my SSI got stolen and I told them not to I pretty much called them on the phone and told them you can’t do that because my cards and stuff got gone, but I gotta get my social security back, I gotta get my EBT Card back, my papers around here all got gone, and my checking account, my debit card, and all this stuff got gone so basically I need my stuff back I was supposed to have some 401K and some weird stuff like that I don’t know everything. Then all my doctors disappeared stuff like that it was really wild. So, I guess I need to figure how to get all my stuff back from hell.

Daniel: Here in Atlanta Charlotte how would you describe your community, who are the people who make up your community here in Atlanta?

Charlotte: Makes up my community here in Atlanta, you know I haven’t found a community here in Atlanta and even the garbage cans are weird. I don’t know even at home and everywhere else there’s like this village to do like do things everything really agrees with this really they do, it was like hard to I really haven’t seen one around here. So, even the garbage cans like the one’s in the park their nailed down then they let the garbage cans are at the end of the driveway sittin around stinkin and stuff and you drive by em in the car garbage gets in the car with you and stuff. They don’t let people do that anywhere else why do people do that I never saw it before you know most of us are polite enough not to do it anyhow and they won’t let us I ain’t see none here.

Daniel: Are you familiar with the homeless community here in Atlanta? (Charlotte: No)

Daniel: Could you please (Charlotte) And another thing there’s a lot of fur here I don’t know who the cat actually is but if you ride around here there’s roadkill and like the fur and I couldn’t figure it out. There’s actually a dead cat down there on Boulevard in front of Citgo black and white dead stiff layin there and I thought that was the fur ball at first so I can’t figure out where the fur comes from cause it’s all over. And I know the drains get stopped up and the AC don’t work sometimes in these places but I can’t figure out how all the fur around here get here it’s like fur to crap it’s all over. I can’t figure out how you end up with so much roadkill and stuff it’s all over. And then they cut down the trees back there you know and try to rebuild the apartments at Gladstone but I don’t see how you end up with this much you know dead animals it’s nuts I would just like to add that.

Daniel: Thank you. I have two more questions for you please Charlotte. The first is use your imagination please imagine that you’re a powerful leader imagine that you’re a decision maker who can really make things happen, how would you change the system to help people to realize their hopes and dreams and live healthy, safe, stable, and happy lives? Imagine yourself as a powerful leader how would you change the system?

Charlotte: Change the system to do what now?

Daniel: Whatever you feel is most important. 

Charlotte: Change the system to make sure that people have important happy lives. I think that you know really, I think that people need to somehow be interested or at least be interested in other people just not be mean or at least try to be interested somehow in other people at all. I just think people need to try to be friendly at all, and interested in other people at all, and like if I had a system somewhere I just think people should be interested in somebody else really. If you’re not interested and you didn’t ask this person what is wrong and how can I help you can I fix what is wrong with you then that person is never gonna become anything their just gonna die homeless on the streets probably and never gonna mean nothin. So, I think you should definitely ask somebody what is wrong with them how can you help that person and help that person so that their just a dead person somewhere and a crappy roadkill, that’s really what I think yeah. And really I think you should be friendly too cause I’ve noticed that around here they’re not even friendly at the stores and ask people how they can help people, and even at my Kroger if you go to work at the Kroger you’re still supposed to ask people can I help you or can I bag your groceries and stuff so that’s another thing about Atlanta and it really irritates me and makes me mad too because as a person not that I work there a lot I was a person that actually worked in retail we’re actually required to say are you okay or whatever even when we’re working at the convenience stores how can I help you they don’t do this here at all, even in Walmart I’ve noticed so the thing like are you okay you know is that a nice store can you do anything their not friendly and don’t give a crap and then you can’t use the toilet in any of them they don’t give a crap.

Daniel: My last question for you please Charlotte, another imagination question. Imagine for a moment that you had a million dollars and you could use it to help your community realize their hopes and dreams and live healthy, safe, stable, and happy lives how exactly would you spend that money? 

Charlotte: Do what now?

Daniel: To help people in your community to realize their hopes and dreams and live healthy, safe, stable, and happy lives, you’ve got a million dollars you can spend it to improve other people’s lives what would you do?

Charlotte: Depends on how many people I got and how many million dollars and what really is, you might still consider giving people a place to live and making sure people still had their EBT cards, still had some kinda form of WIC, or still had some form of child support, still had some kinda form of stuff and that kind of a thing. You could probably still try to make sure people had a house that was decent and at least had something that met their needs you know it depends on how many people and how many dollars what you’ve got. You might could do that for free too depends on what kind of large gymnasium you’ve got really cause I don’t see what would be preventing us from doing that anyhow most of the time but anyhow.

Charlotte I’m grateful to you is there anything else you would like to say?

Charlotte: No, there’s nothing else I’d like to say but I would like to tell you that they do give funny money around here, and they have given me two torn dollars recently that I couldn’t reuse they gimme the last one a little while at the Dollar Tree and I need my money right now cause this is like crap. So, they gave me $5 dollars back in change and one of them was a torn dollar that I can’t reuse okay a few days ago a week ago they done it again down here at Citgo they give me my change back and one of them was a torn dollar again I couldn’t use. And I actually have caught them they told me I couldn’t use them to buy stuff but then I’ve caught them lettin other people use their torn dollars recently to buy stuff. So, I would just like to add that there is some funny money and stuff that goes on around here and I’m not exactly sure what all goes on it really did irritate me. I kept the receipt and I’m pretty sure you can take this back to the bank and tell a banker or someone like that that there is some funny money that goes on around here at the establishments that we shop at and stuff like that but anyhow. Thankyou.

Daniel: Thank you very much.