Wednesday, June 22, 2011

"A Day In The Life...(Part 3)


After a quick stop by the cell to drop off my books, I go down to the main area of the cell block. Once again I am waiting, this time for lunch. It is not a long wait though. They call us to eat at about 11:15. Lunch today is: Pinto Beans, rice, cornbread, cabbage and an orange. The beans are bland, the rice undercooked, the cornbread tastes like gritty cardboard. I don't even dare the cabbage. The orange is pretty good, but I suppose it is hard to mess that up. By the end of the week I will be sick of oranges, since they will give them to us once a day for the rest of the week. After about 3 days they will be freezer-burned and not as good.

Lunch is more filling than breakfast, but no more nourishing. The food sits like a warm lump in my belly, taking up space but doing little else.


Returning from chow, I proceed to carry out my duties as a Housman. That is a job title within the pod. We are not required to work, but if we wish to earn money, it is the legal method. My job is to scrub the showers. It is disgusting, unfulfilling work that pays $0.35 an hour. I'm lucky to have it.

The job takes me about 30 minutes to complete, which I follow with a quick shower. It is then time to lock down for another count. My cell partner will stay at work maintenance shop, so I will have some time alone during this lock down.


Why it takes an hour and a half to count is beyond me. They go through the block in about 5 minutes and there are enough officers to cover each block. The entire count should only take about 20 minutes and probably does. Every other count is cleared in under an hour. I am fairly certain it is cleared a lot faster, but they keep us locked down so we are out of their way. (The C/Os I mean.)

I use this time for writing. It is peaceful, few distractions. I can actually think clearly and transmit my thoughts to paper. Sometimes I wish they would leave me locked in a cell by myself. If I have to be in prison I would prefer not to deal with the ignorance that surrounds me.


This tends to be a lazy part of the day, unless you are scheduled for school, a program or work. Otherwise, the next 2 hours are "down-time". For me, it is a good time to get a little reading in or maybe a nap.

At 3:00 my cell partner comes in from work and the prison is again locked down for count. I'm a little tired, so I take a nape while my cell partner watches CNN on his TV. I might be watching my own TV but the cheaply made, piece of junk died about 3 months ago. I've been saving to get it replaced ever since. Maybe it is a good thing. I could use the rest.

Count clears at about 4:15, but they don't open the doors for another 10 or 15 mintues. The sound of my door clicking open wakes me up. Over the years I have developed an aversion to sleeping with my door open. Not that anything has ever happened, but it is just safer to always stay alert. So I get up, wash the sleep from my eyes, and once again I am waiting. This time for dinner...

To Be Concluded...

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