Demetrius Lewis, a homeless chef who spends his nights in a tent, is praying for sunshine.
But Lewis, one of dozens of homeless people living at a makeshift tent city in downtown Fort Lauderdale, is better off than most: He has his tent.
Others are making do with just umbrellas or nothing at all.
“My home got flooded out,” Lewis said, pointing to his blue tent.
One tent over, John Williams said he was trying to keep his stuff dry, but it was a nearly impossible task.
“I’ll make the best of it,” he said.
The misery extends beyond the homeless encampment outside the Broward County Main Library in Fort Lauderdale.
The wet season kicked off on May 15. Like clockwork, the rain showers started a week ago, flooding roads and saturating the ground throughout South Florida, from Hollywood to Boca Raton and beyond.
More rain is expected Monday.
The news did little to lift spirits at the homeless encampment in Fort Lauderdale, where wet blankets and clothing covered a sidewalk littered with water bottles and crushed soda cans.
Lewis peered inside his drenched tent, shaking his head.
“I’ll wait till it stops raining, dry it out and start over,” he said.
Fort Lauderdale and Broward County officials are still working on ways to move the homeless camp out of its prominent downtown locale.
A year ago, the city surprised the camp’s inhabitants with front end loaders, dumping their belongings in the trash and pushing the tents closer to the library, to the county side of the property.
Williams, 35, said he lost most of his belongings last year when the city of Fort Lauderdale showed up with bulldozers.
“They took all my stuff,” he said. “They just took it from me.”
His friend, LaToya Dean, spent the night in a chair propped up inside his tent, but got no sleep.
“I can’t sleep in a chair,” she said.
But she has no plans to head to a homeless shelter.
“I tried a shelter,” she said. “It was gross. Had to be up real early in the morning. To get help, they want you to get a job.”
Lewis, 32, says he started living on the streets eight months ago when the rent on his efficiency went from $500 to $900 a month.
Rain or no rain, Lewis says he has no plans to move to a shelter.
“What shelter they got for us?” he said. “They all full. They don’t care about us. We’re our own community. This is what we built for ourselves. And they want to take it away. We call it home.”
A line formed near the street when Fort Lauderdale resident Bonnie Gresham drove up in a car loaded with sandwiches and meal platters.
“We do this as a family,” Gresham said as her brother and niece helped hand out meals through the car window.
When the last one in line was served, Gresham drove around to the south side of the library, where more homeless people had gathered to get out of the rain.
With a toot of the horn and a wave from the window, Gresham let them know food had arrived.