An urban explorer visited a house that she thought was abandoned, only to discover that there was much more to it than she'd imagined.
Leslie, an urban explorer known as The Tourist, went to the house on her birthday in 2015. The home had always intrigued her, though she thought nobody lived there. When she went inside, what she found changed her life forever.
Leslie wrote about the discovery in a post on Little Things.
“This is Lawrence. He lives in a house I had believed to be abandoned. The driveway is overgrown, the roof is caving in and the interior would lead anyone to believe this land had been deserted. I found him in the living room. He has a hard time getting around so he spends most of his time in there. Alone,” she wrote.
"He is missing his right eye and has cataracts infecting the left," she continued. "Even after noticing a stranger essentially helping themselves to his life he was nothing but sweet and kind to me. He was even nice enough to let me take his picture which I will always treasure."
"He is a beautiful soul and I plan on visiting him a lot," Leslie wrote. "I’m posting this picture in hopes that it will inspire at least one person to reach out to someone they may have lost contact with or perhaps just forgot about. These old souls are still full of life and I feel blessed to have met this one."
Leslie said that the two planned to have “many dinner dates” and continue their unexpected friendship.
“Over the course of 3 hours we ate and drank and laughed. I was fortunate enough to hear about his life.. His struggles and his triumphs,” she wrote.
“This truly was one of the best experiences of my life & I can’t wait to share another meal with such a gentle soul.”
Leslie later posted an update on her friend and his house, saying that she helped him take old appliances out of the home and clean up.
This was all made possible by a very generous company and a few awesome boys with big hearts and strong lower backs. I can’t thank everyone enough for their support and generosity during this period in my life -- and in his. He is beyond grateful, not just to me. He knows you are all following his story.
After a few recent visits to the doctors, it’s apparent that his health is declining, rapidly. These may be the last few months I have with my friend and I plan to make them as comfortable and enjoyable for him as possible. He’s informed me of his funeral arrangements and has asked me to be there. I told him I wouldn’t have it any other way.
He shared something with me that will stay with me forever. He said the day I showed up was the best day of his life. As self righteous as I feel writing that, I understand how he feels. The best day of my life was when I met him. He gave me the chance to really do something for someone -- an act of kindness with no expectation of reward. It’s a rare opportunity and I’m glad I was able to accept the challenge.
Leslie continued to share updates on Lawrence, later informing followers of his condition -- which had deteriorated since he suffered a stroke.
“Lawrence is now living at a local retirement home and doing much better. He’s safe and warm and seems to be fairly happy to be around some new people, although I know he misses home,” she wrote.
The story of Leslie and Lawrence quickly went viral, with visitors expressing how touched they were by it on Little Things’ Facebook page.
“I believe in fate and this was meant to be. Who knows what would have happened to this man with his declining health issues. Thankgoodness that he is being cared for now. You are a very good person with loving heart,” one reader commented.