Spent celebrating the 1st at Al's parents' place in Santa Cruz. It was real nice. D, FTC, and Al's family provided good company as usual. Current Mood:
Went to court Thursday, 1/3. Lucky my ass, the judge who heard my case the week before laid out most of the sentence, and he was real sympathetic and benevolent. But, I was unlucky with this Commissioner McKenna who heard my case this time around.
She questioned and wondered why the CHP, DA and the previous judge decided to let me slide by without charging or addressing my speeding. She was really upset that I was getting all the breaks. So, she got me by sentencing me to serve my Work Release right away, contrary to what Judge Karesh had previously advised. Lucky for me again, he outlined that I only serve 16 hours of work release instead of the usual 32.
No prob. So I thought until my lawyer and I reached the County Clerk's office. They said that the paperwork for the work release does not get to the Sheriff's office in about 2-3 weeks. OMFG! Are you shitting me? I'm leaving in less than 14 days! What was that Commissioner thinking? She said that I could take care of it. Now what?
Well, what do you know...she outlined that if I could not do the work release I could fulfill that sentence by spending 48 hours (instead of the usual 24) in jail.
That's where I've been.
1/7, 4:30 PM, D dropped me off at the Police station. I was booked, spent 9 hours in the waiting room and at 2 AM finally was transported to the Women's Correctional Center where I spent 2 nights and days 'incarcerated' in Dorm C.
My bunkie, Angela (Ange) Liwalhati, is a Swedish woman married to a Filipino man. She's a really nice older lady who took me under her wing.
I met several interesting women in there with varying degrees of crime. Mostly drug abuse, a couple spousal abuse, robberies, petty theft, but mostly drugs.
It was a humbling experience for myself.
I came in there thinking, oh well, two days. Serve my time and then just fuck off.
Every service provided was the bare minimum. Tiny toothbrush, a comb, shower slippers, a styrofoam cup, a pair of canvas/kungfu shoes, the ones without shoelaces, two miniature bars of smelly soap, a couple towels, and blankets. Every garb the color orange, down to the granny panties and socks.
I don't want to wear anything orange in my life ever again.
The food wreaked havoc with my digestive system. I had gas both afternoons after lunching on 'mystery' meat that the ladies call puppy tongue. Ewww.
Packets of mustard and mayo were precious commodities. Slices of bread were traded like cash. You could barter with another inmate to take your cleaning day duties with the proper bribe. You got lots of boiled eggs and you're queen.
Most of the deputies were respectful, but there were some who were downright nasty.
On Mondays the women put in their orders to the commissary. Obviously, if you only rely on the feeding system in this facility, you'd starve. Breakfast at 6 AM, lunch at 11, dinner at 4 PM. Then nothing. Most of these women have been here much longer, and even I, only after two days, are sick and tired of the same crap to eat everyday. No one did promise variety in prison, right?
Shit, it's 3 AM...I should really sleep. I have a long day tomorrow.
I'm really happy to be free.
I got something so valuable out of this experience.
A different perspective on freedom. I've far, too long, have taken for granted how fortunate I am. How vulnerable and precious individual freedom is. I realized how friendship, loyalty, trust, and compassion could seem so basic, but conducive to every man's survival.
I appreciate my life so much more.
I have my freedom.
I have my dreams.
I have my trip.
I have my friends.
I can enjoy the sun.
I don't have to wish.
I don't have to regret.
I just have to live.
I just have to appreciate.