VERNON, British Columbia — A stranger on Christmas Eve gave a homeless man in Canada a tiny house on wheels to sleep in on cold winter nights — but law enforcement officials have been waging something of a cold war against the man’s mobile home.
It has heat and electricity — and just enough room to get out of the cold for the night.
“I get in it and sleep in it. I’ve had at least up to four people in it at night,” Kurt Stairs said.
Stairs’ little home on wheels is appealing to those who are used to sleeping in the street in cold weather. But law enforcement officials said it sometimes looks like an infraction.
“We were getting complaints within the downtown core, because it was set up on Main Street,” Clint Kanester, who runs Vernon’s bylaw enforcement unit, told CTV Vancouver.
Stairs has been asked to move it along a few times over concerns of private property and his choices when it comes time to plug it in.
“We did make the owners aware and that he was as well, you know, stealing power,” Kanester said.
The authorities said there is space, and they want him to find a spot in a shelter, but he and his friends just want to find a space to park his home.
At 20 square feet, it’s not much, but it’s special — built especially for him and handed over by a complete stranger.
“I just got it Christmas Eve. Told him it was the best gift I had for Christmas — the only gift I got for Christmas,” Stairs said.
It was an unexpected gift at a time of year when people like Stairs are often forgotten.
“It was nice of him,” Stairs said.