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Monday, June 6, 2011

Hey! You! Get Out of My Way! Part 12 Leaving Home

Two weeks later Tom and Alex brought a joint into the shelter. Everything seemed to be heading a direction to put me on “a path” in life.

I would finish up my time at Equinox, move to Saratoga to live in a group home and then go off to college. Tom and Alex stood at the top of the stairs and waited to hear Laroy’s snoring before they opened my door. “Come across the hall,” whispered Alex motioning with his hand. “We are going to smoke some weed.” Silently we crossed the hallway and entered Alex’s room.




I had been in Alex’s room before but now he was living alone, his roommate recently worked out his problems with his parents and moved back home. Against one wall of Alex’s room was a pile of mattresses that were kept there as storage. Our job in the morning was to move them to a storage room on the upper floor of the building. People were always donating things to the shelter and since our numbers were always growing the donations came in handy.
We got the idea to block the door with the mattresses so that no one could get in and surprise reached in the front pocket of his jeans and pulled out a joint, he then placed it in his mouth. Pausing he to smile he took a lighter out of his pocket and lit up.
The smoke curled around Alex’s head as he inhaled deeply and held the smoke in his lungs. Tom reached out and took the joint from Alex holding it between two fingers. “Smells like skunk,” says Tom with a laugh. Alex gives him the thumbs up.
We sat on that fire escape for about 20 minutes talking about what our dreams were when we got out of here. Tom and Alex wanted to see the world and travel across the country. I wanted to move to New York City and become a dancer.
We finished the joint and while we were climbing back in the window it sounded as someone was pounding on the bedroom door. “Open this door now!” screamed the person on the other side of the door. It was Laroy. “I know that you’re smoking weed,” he screamed. Alex and Tom ran across the room and lay against the mattresses, trying to block Laroy from coming in. Laroy tired of asking us to open the door began to kick it down. The crunching and splintering sound created by the door as it crashed in was deafening.
Once through the door Laroy butted the mattresses and sent Tom and Alex flying across the room. I stood there with my mouth hanging wide open, completely in shock. “The police are on their way,” screamed Laroy as he took the mattresses and tossed them as if they weighed nothing.
The Albany police ever subtle pulled up in front of the building with their lights flashing. Laroy grabbed at the air as we tried to dive past him. Somehow this tiny little ex-Hells Angel kicked in a door, threw mattresses around and grabbed three boys as they jumped out of his way.
Laroy dragged us down the stairs and into the office. We could see the police at the front door. Laroy threw each of us into a chair and pointing screamed “Don’t anyone move!” Running to the front door he opened it and in a calm voice said “Gentlemen what do I owe the pleasure of your visit?” The cops laughed and walked in. You could hear their walkie-talkies going off as one of the officers pushed his hat back off his head. “You got anymore on you?” he asked scanning the three of us.
“No……no…no sir,” Alex stammered. “Well you better not,” he responded. Speaking into their radio’s one of the cops walked back out of the room. The one who stayed began to give us a lecture on the evils of smoking marijuana. While he was talking his partner re-entered the room and began to go through our pockets. Thank god they never found anything.  When he was done with his speech he tipped his hat to Laroy and he and his partner walked back into the night.
“Tonight is your last night,” said Laroy. “Go back to your rooms, in the morning you have to leave.”
To be continued…….
 
Geoffrey Doig-Marx holds all written and electronic rights to his writting "A Day in the Life". It can not be reprinted in part or whole without his written consent.

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