American Ann Webb saved up all year to treat herself to a European vacation in Spain and France. But when she tried to leave Paris at the end of her trip, her discount flight was cancelled due to an AirFrance pilot strike, and new ticket prices jumped to heights beyond her means, effectively stranding her in Paris without enough money to get home. After a confusing and disappointing encounter at the American embassy, where they refused to help her return to the States, Webb wound up homeless; she slept outside and sought aid (often without success) from French shelters and relief programs. Faced with the reality of street life and other challenges that most Americans would find daunting, she worked to scrape out a living in a strange foreign country. In her extraordinary account, Webb recounts how she managed to survive in a world dominated by often predatory men. Her abilities to find food, shelter, and even friendship in a harsh, relentless environment proved truly extraordinary, and her courage to completely remake her life when all hope seemed lost will inspire readers. Webb’s story is proof that, when faced with desperate situations, it is possible to find a well of strength in order to keep living.
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