18th July 04 Reception Centre
I am a "fish" – someone new to the prison system. Here at Alhambra Unit, I’ve been strip-searched, blood tested, TB tested, questioned, photographed, and ordered to give a DNA sample from the inside of my left cheek. I am temporarily housed in a four-man cell that, unlike my jail cell, actually receives cool air. When I see cockroaches, I know they are imaginary ones. Now that the cockroach torture is over, I am sleeping better.
I have two Hispanic and one white cellmates. They sing a lot. Two of them have hepatitis C. One of them just found out yesterday. He thinks he contracted it during his one-year stay at Durango (one of Sheriff Joe Arpaio's jails). The other contracted it by sharing a needle. He is detoxing from heroin use. They sing their blues away. I joined in with some Beatle songs. A fellow in the cell next door slit his wrist this morning. He was discovered and taken to the Medical Unit.
Everyone here is astounded that I was locked up in the jail’s harshest quarters for so long. They are perplexed as to why I am finding things here so comfortable. I feel sorry for the inmates I left behind. I hope to see some of them – including Frankie – come through here soon. After enduring the jail, those inmates can make it anywhere.
31st Aug 04 Thanks Ste
Thanks Ste Wilkinson (computer whiz kid and family friend) for renovating my blog, inserting my mum’s favourite photo of me from my stockbroking days, and for adding links to Mothers Against Arpaio and a site about Sheriff Joe’s misdemeanours. Ste has also put a comments link into the blog, making it easy for you to give feedback.
I haven’t got access to a computer or the Internet. With a pen refill (we're not allowed a pen as it could be weaponized) I scribble away until my hand hurts. The pen refill is a step up from the jail's golf pencil. I send the blog entries to my parents for typing up and posting. They will forward any emails or comments back to me. It may take a little time for my reply, but I will write back and appreciate hearing from you.
Thanks again Ste, Good lookin’ out, dawg!