To Get Away
I had the chance to get away and I took it.
I grabbed all the money I'd hidden over the months and ran. I ran to the train station. I bought a ticket, boarded, and when that train pulled out of the station, I felt blessed.
I began crying, then stopped myself. Defiantly Iwent to the ‘smoking’ area and lit a cigarette .
My ‘master’ had not ‘permitted ‘ me to smoke. Now that I was free, I could smoke, and I enjoyed the cigarette.
When I had finished I held, appreciating the noise of the train. It locked me into a safe privacy where I could ‘mourn’ my marriage and with try to imagine my future.
I decided I would use my maiden name. I would no longer be Theresa Diane Robinson I’d go the step further of being T. Diane Bandazian.
Then I’d tell people to call me ‘Dee’.
It wasn’t F.B.I. proof, but it would work for a start.
Feeling stronger, I went back into the carriage, took my seat, closed my eyes, going for a few hours of exhausted sleep.
The train arrived in Miami mid afternoon.
I came out of the station and looked around. I had a destination in mind, a particular hotel which was very cheap as it was a training site for mental handicapped people.
I asked for directions, received them. The Hotel was only six blocks away so I’d walk.
I took my time, trying not to seem pathetic and lost and out of place.
I reached the hotel lobby tired, sweaty, but kept it together. I took a room, went upstairs and exhaled.
I stripped, took a shower, then climbed into the bed to reflect.
The hotel staff hadn’t asked for identification. This was not as strange as me, instead of going with my plan to use my maiden name, said I was Dee Lopez. Many people in Miami have Spanish names, I suppose it would be easier to blend.
For the first time in how many years I was safe, although I couldn’t grasp it.
I hadn’t eaten for many hours . It was wiser to do all movement in daylight, so forced myself up, dressed, and went out. I stopped at the first decent place I saw, ate, rested, out for another smoke, then back to the hotel and, then to bed.
I woke ten hours later.
It was four fifteen a.m.
I thought of my husband, ex-husband. I imagined what he would be doing, thinking, saying.
I didn’t feel safe.
Thinking about him, I didn’t feel safe.
I sat on the bed, hungry, scared, then thought of my cell phone. I’d shut it off on the train. I went to it, turned it on. There were dozens of calls from my husband....
I pulled the phone apart, went into the bathroom, dropped the SIM chip into the
tank...not the toilet, but the tank. Then, I put the phone back together.
I felt as if I’d won a great victory.
I listened to the radio and when it was seven a.m. I showered, dressed, went out on the street. I got something to eat, recognizing I needed a job.
The first chance
I walked ten blocks and then slowly back stopping at every business place I saw asking if they were hiring.
Most were headshakes.
At my fifth stop, the guy who was in charge was asked for my social security number. I got nervous. He spoke to me in Spanish. I whispered ‘no papers...’ with a touch of Spanish accent.
He hired me to answer the phone when the caller spoke English. How I understood what he was saying was more luck than High School Spanish as he actually spoke Spanglish, so it wasn’t that hard to get what he was telling me.
During my break I went to the Hotel, (which was five blocks away) paid for another two days, telling them I was starting a job.
They said if I wanted to be long term I could. They would move me to another section which had a kitchenette.
They told me of cheaper places, but I wasn’t ready for more of a move.
On my way back to work I got a new SIM card for my phone.
I thought of calling a friend or a relative, but squashed that idea. Not now. Not Yet.