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Monday, June 13, 2011

Hey! You! Get Out of My Way! Part 13 Leaving Home

Now what do I do? I have no plan B. In the morning I am going to be forced to pack my stuff and go. Where do I go, into the street? What have I done? I am so close to moving to Saratoga to live in a group home and now it is all screwed up.
We walk silently back to our rooms. I have never seen Laroy that pissed off; come to think of it I don’t think that I have ever seen Laroy angry before. Every time we turn on the stairs to look back Laroy just points with his finger to the top of the stairs and screams “Move!”
In complete silence Tom and I go into our room and Alex returns to his across the hall. “I am screwed,” I tell Tom. Tom just looks into space. “What the hell am I going to do?” I ask. Tom just shakes his head. We both get ready for bed and this time we don’t leave our room.
I spend the whole night staring at the ceiling. I have nowhere to go in the morning, it is all over. Silently, I slide out of bed and pack my things. Tom rolls over and looks at me. Not a word passes between us. An hour before the staff arrives for the morning shift, I fall asleep. When I wake up, Tom is not in the room. I open the door and look out to see if I can spot him or Alex. Walking into the hallway I peer around the corner so I can look into the TV room. No one is in there either. I walk back into the hallway and lean over the banister. It’s a great way to see if anything is going on downstairs.
As usual it is a beehive of activity. I listen closely and I can hear snippets of words. It sounds like the staff is in disbelief as to what went on last night. While I am eavesdropping Donna appears directly under me. She just happens to glances up at that moment, as she catches sight of me she shakes her head in disgust. “I’ll be here when you get downstairs,” she says walking into the office without a backward glance in my direction.
My brain is in full panic mode. What do I do now? My things are packed, I believe that they will stay true to their word and throw me out. I have seen it happen before. If you don’t like the rules here, you get asked to leave. Smoking weed is not only illegal it is in strict violation of their policies.
It is time to face the music. I have taken the longest shower and dressed as slowly as possible. I can no longer “put it off.” To get out of the building, I have to walk past the office. Standing at the top of the landing I take each step as if I am walking to the gallows. The steps squeak as I put my weight on them, betraying me and announcing my slow arrival. At the bottom of the stairs I see no one around. As I walk down the hallway to the main office, I can hear a gathering in the kitchen behind me.
I step into the office and there is no one in here. I am alone. No Donna and no staff. On the table I notice that someone has left my file. I walk quickly over to the table and thumb through it. Everything that I have ever done in the shelter is clearly documented. The night I arrived by police escort, all the court dates, interactions with my family and all the staffs private notes are now sitting in a file right in front of me. I act without thinking and grab a Yellow Pages. I place it on the table over my file and then I pick up both the yellow pages and the file. My heart is racing as I turn out of the office and head to the stairs. Everyone is in the kitchen is still having a meeting over coffee.
I quickly head up the stairs and run into my bedroom. I can feel my pulse in my neck. Throwing my file into my bag, I zip it up and head back into the hall. I look both ways as I enter the hallway near Alex’s room. 

Once there I go over to the window and throw open the sash. I duck my head and swing my legs out onto the fire escape. Grabbing my bag I pull myself out on to the landing and slide the window closed. Very quietly I take each step towards the ground, these stairs don’t betray me. Now sweat is starting to form on my brow, I wipe it with the back of my hand. At the last step I jump to the ground and run around the back into the alley and disappear.
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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