Posts Tagged ‘Crying’

Three Days I was lying in that hospital bed…Three days! And it was the best three days I’ve had in ages! Nurses giving me dinner, helping me out of the bed to go for a waz, and all the tele I could watch on a screen above the bed. You were supposed to pay for the tele, but as they couldn’t get hold of me ma for three days they clubbed to together and paid for the service. I could even press a button which made the bed go up and down… People slag off the National Health Service, but I couldn’t fault it! It was a million times better than being at home.

The Bizzies came round to ask about the attack. I decided to tell them that I didn’t know who the lads were who I got a beating from, and that I didn’t see their faces, and I couldn’t tell their ages. I made that decision ’cause I knew the lads were something to do with Penny Salerno’s cousins, and thought it might be best to deal with them myself.

I’d been in Whiston hospital for three nights when me ma turned up. I wasn’t pleased to see her, and she was well put out that she had to get the bus up to the hozzy. She came in the ward all crying and giving me cuddles, saying she’d been dead worried about me. But as soon as the nurse wasn’t looking she was in my face telling me I’m a selfish little bastard, and if it wasn’t for social services on her back she’d have left me there longer ’cause she’s a busy woman, and she’ll lose money over this. I don’t know what money she’s on about, ’cause she doesn’t even work.

In front of the nurses me ma gave me a plazzy bag with clothes in, saying she’d brought me fresh clothes to go home in. I emptied the bag on the bed.. it was a pair of my dirty jeans, a teeshirt and a pair of undies. The teeshirt wasn’t mine, and the undies defo weren’t mine, but at least they were clean.
Then a woman in a suit came in and asked if she could have a word with me alone. Me ma smiled at her and then called back to me as she was leaving the ward, ‘I’ll be waiting right outside for you son, and I’ll cook your favourite for tea tonight when we get home’.
Favourite? I haven’t got a favourite.. she doesn’t bleedin’ cook! Then I realised what she was up to.. this posh looking woman was from social services. She asked me how my home life was, and if I was being looked after properly.  At first I wanted to say that my homelife was shite, and that if a cold, dark house, with no food in the cupboards, and a mother who takes root in the pub is being looked after properly, then I’m doing just great. But I knew that if I told the truth I’d be back in care again.. and I hated that even more than having to look after myself at home.  And who’d look out for me ma if I wasn’t around? I’m sure she’d be dead by now if I didn’t check up on her. So I said everything’s fine.

The hozzy said to me ma that they wouldn’t let me go unless I was going in a car or a taxi, ’cause I was still in a lot of pain with my ribs, and my eyes looked like I’d made an enemy of Tyson.  Me ma told them that we were getting a taxi.  She lied.  We walked down to the bus stop and I had to stand in pain as I waited for the bus.  She was well pissed off that she had to pay the busfare for me, but  I was popping pills the hozzy had given me to ease the pain in my ribs, so I just kept quiet.

When I got home I had to go and lie down ’cause my ribs were in bulk and I was hoping I’d sleep so it would ease the pain.  After about an hour of drifting in and out of sleep, and hallucinating about Penny Salerno kissing my swollen face (and then heading down towards my painful ribs), I woke up ’cause I could hear crying.   I eased myself off the bed and went onto the landing.

At first I thought I was still dreaming – maybe the painkillers were too strong.  But there, sitting on the stairs was a kid.  He couldn’t have been more than three.  He was staring at the front door and quietly crying for his dad.  I walked down the stairs and stood in front of him – he stopped crying when he saw me.

‘Hello! Who are you?’ I said dead gently.  The kid had dirty trails down his face from the tears, and looked suspicious of me.   I checked the house, but there was no sign of anyone.

I went up to my room, took some stash from my secret savings (which I got for Chrimbo off Anthony), and I put my hand out for the kid to take hold of.  This was an emergency and so I could use my stash.  The kid held my hand tightly and didn’t say a word as I lead him out of the house and down the road to the sit-in chippy.   We sat in there with a minced beef pie and chips each, and two cokes,  and the kid scoffed the lot without speaking a word.   I didn’t have a clue who this kid was, but it warmed my heart to see him scoffing like that.  I have to say, my pie and chips tasted so good, I treated myself to a pickled egg and one for the kid (the kid didn’t want one, so I had two).

 

 

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Before the blackout -Photo by Jilly Gardiner

Before the blackout –
Photo by Jilly Gardiner

Can’t believe Chrimbo’s just days away.  It’s a whole year since I robbed that Chrimbo tree from someone’s garden and put it in our living room!  Can’t believe it’s already time to go and rob another one.    Our house has got no Chrimbo decos; me ma celebrates Chrimbo by drinking double what she usually does, and staying out for even longer than normal.  So it’s my job to make the house look brighter and Christmasy.

It’s dark when I leave school now, so the day before yesterday I went walking down the posh street where I robbed that dead nice tree from last year.  They put loads of Chrimbo lights outside their houses and it looks dead boss.  One house had a little steam train made of coloured lights on their garden – I really wished we could have that outside ours.   But next to the steam train was a small, fat Chrimbo tree in a pot – just perfect for our living room.  I noticed the house still had their curtains open, so I had to be careful when I bunked into their garden.  The lights from the steam train made it hard for me to hide, but there were loads of bushes for me to stoop behind.   The only problem with nicking Chrimbo trees out of gardens is that they always have lights on them! Have you tried to untangle those lights?  It’s not easy you know!

Anyway, I could see there were people wandering around the living room inside the house, so I really had to be extra careful.   I stooped by the side of the tree and started to pull the lights off, but they weren’t budging.  So then I had the bright idea of getting my flicky out (which I’ve  started carrying for when Zani’s lads come and kick my head in) and started cutting the wire to the lights so I could just carry the whole tree away in the pot with the lights still attached (it’s less hassle than untangling them!).  As I cut the wire, the lights went out and the tree was dark – but I wasn’t expecting such a dramatic impact from light to dark in the garden – somehow it made the steam train lights go out too, and all the other Chrimbo lights in the garden.  This was VERY noticable!   I saw a face of a woman in the window.. she was staring out onto the garden but I don’t think she could see anything with it being so dark.   Then the light came on in the hall, and the door opened.    I don’t mind telling you that I nearly shit myself!  Some fella came out onto the path from the house and stared into the garden.. he stood there for a life time (I reckon), and I hid at the back of the small tree, not even breathing.   I was dead made up when he turned and started walking back into the house shouting ‘Must be the fuse’.   He shut the door behind him as he went in.

I thought I’ve only got seconds to carry the tree away before he’s back out wondering what else is causing the blackout, so I picked up the tree in the pot (it was like a lead weight) and staggered across the garden onto the pavement.  It was then I saw the kid in the window… he was about four, and was sitting on the back of the settee staring at the dark garden.  I stopped and put the heavy pot down.   I could see his bottom lip going as he looked out at the blackness.   Tears rolled down his face as he started sobbing; I could even hear him from the other side of the window.

It broke my heart… How could I take his Chrimbo tree away?  Call me stupid, but I had to put it back.   So I staggered back into the garden with the tree in the pot.  I was just putting it back where I found it when the outside light came on and the front door flung open.   There was I, caught red-handed; bending over the Chrimbo tree.  I couldn’t move…. I just stared at the fella in the doorway (I didn’t know what else to do).  He stared back.

‘I was putting it back!’ I said, knowing how stupid it sounded.

He shouted into the house, but didn’t take his eyes off me, ‘Call the police!’.

I felt my feet again and legged it off across the garden and down the road.  I felt him chase me out of the garden but wasn’t sure if he was tailing me down the road, so I kept running for ages until I had a stitch.

There’s only one thing for it.. I’m going have to do the decent thing and pay for a tree off Greaty Market this year … I can’t have a crying kid on my conscience!

The offending Lamb-Banana!

After a crappy summer of dodging me ma and her needles and dreaming up exciting ways I could have Binny knocked off, I was glad to be at school (yeah, I know…Dead weird eh!).   It was good to see Penny Salerno and her shiny black long hair everyday; I didn’t need to wait a whole week to meet her on a Saturday anymore.   But I don’t know if she looked at me in a very good light when we had a bet on the way home from school…. Penny reckoned that I’d be arrested if I went and sat on one of those Lamb-Bananas in town.   I bet her twenty pence that there’s no way that someone can be arrested for sitting on a Lamb-Banana.   So we shook hands on it.   I sat on the nearest Lamb-Banana to prove my point…. and found out that I owed Penny twenty pence, ’cause you CAN be arrested for sitting on a Lamb-Banana!

Whether it was the actual ‘sitting’ on it that got me arrested, or whether it was the actual pushing the bizzy over onto his arse as he tried to man-handle me off the Lamb-Banana that actually put the nail in the coffin.. I’m not really sure which.    Either way, I found myself down the cop-shop being talked down to by a bizzy who thought he was interrogating an al-Qaeda suspect (he was obviously a new recruit who was looking at this opportunity to make a first impression on his fellow bizzy officers!).

I said to him ‘ Look mate.. all I did was sit on a Lamb-Banana!  You haven’t just foiled a major bomb plot to blow up the Liverbuildings!’

Well… the word ‘bomb’ was enough to have a second bizzy come in and treat me like a terrorist suspect.. both not a lot older than me, and full of shit.

I was in that cop-shop for nearly 3 hours, not a glass of water, not a phone call! If it wasn’t for the fact that they let me go without charge after  3 hours, they were dead lucky ’cause I’d have put a counter assault claim in for how that copper man-handled me off the Lamb-Banana, and the fact that I didn’t get my rights to a solicitor and phone call down at the station.  They got off lightly there!

As I walked outside and smelt the fresh air of freedom, there was Penny.. tearful and red-eyed, waiting for me!  She ran to me and put her arms tight around me, bursting into tears.  I was overcome myself – she was so beautiful! She DID really care for me! This wasn’t something I witnessed in my life very often.   My heart felt like it was going to burst as I felt her arms around me, and her tears against my face.

I really think I’m in love with Penny Salerno….

I’ve been to hell.   A place I never want to stay.   It smells like our school, and echos in just the same way… but the doors bang harder, and the security guards (what they call ‘screws’) are even more evil than our Science teacher!

formerly known as strangeways

Image via Wikipedia

Anthony had agreed to come to Strangeways in Manchester so I could see the fella who was me dad.   He’d written a few emails and made a few phone calls – and then here we were – being checked for flickies and coke as we walked in.

I felt sick.   Sick with excitement, sick with dread.  I was finally going to meet the fella who was me dad, Carl Laurence.    I’d rehearsed it in the mirror loads of times – smiling, shaking hands with myself ‘Hello dad, I’m Tommy.. your son’.   But now I’d forgotten what I’d rehearsed.  I couldn’t remember my own name, let alone how to shake hands.

Anthony was dead boss.. he put his hand on my shoulder and smiled.. he didn’t have to say anything.. I knew he was telling me that he’d make sure everything was all right.

And then, there I was, sitting opposite the fella I’d been waiting to meet for years.   Tall, brown skin, messy, Afro hair.   He didn’t shake my hand.  He just stared at me across the table.

I couldn’t talk.  Anthony explained to him who I was, and that me ma had said I was his son.

‘So…. Tommy!’  Said Carl, ‘You’ve grown up!’

Turned out he’d known me when I was a baby.   It’s weird, but I didn’t have the feelings  I thought I would.   Before I came to Strangeways I so wanted to meet him, for him tell me he was my dad.  But now as I watched his lined face, and looked between his missing teeth, I didn’t feel like I had any connection to him at all.

‘Are you me dad?’ I said nervously.

Carl smiled, but not a good smile, a smile that meant something else, ‘I could be.  With a mother like yours, who knows!’

At first I didn’t know what he was getting at.. but then I got it.  I stood up, ‘What are you saying about me ma?’

‘Nothin’ lad, nothin’.  I must admit, he did look a bit sorry for saying it.

Anthony got hold of my arm, and made me sit down.   But I couldn’t listen to Carl Laurence after that.  He kept speaking, but I couldn’t hear it.. I couldn’t understand it.   I watched his eyes, his mouth, his wrinkles moving.   If he was my dad, I didn’t give a f&ck.   I had a horrible feeling welling up in my stomach as he kept speaking.  He was trying to be nice but I hated him.

I didn’t speak again.   Just listened to his words, but couldn’t take them in.   I was made up when Anthony said we should go.. he knew something was wrong… he knew I wanted to leave Carl Laurence behind.

As I left, he said he was getting out soon, and he’d look me up.   Why did I just want to cry.. not wimpy crying, but angry crying.  But  I wasn’t going to show him.   I kept it together right until I got outside the first doors.. and then Anthony put his hand on my shoulder and squeezed it.  I fell apart!  Burst into loads of tears… Stupid, wimpy bastard that I am.

I just don’t know what to think or feel anymore.  Who the f$ck am I?

Lights… Camera… Action!  My Chrimbo was like something from one of those perfect family black and white films they have on in the middle of the afternoon!     I spent Chrimbo eve night in a big double bed with clean, white sheets.  I even had a dead posh walk in shower in a room off the bedroom, which they called an ‘en suite’, whatever the bleedin’ hell that is!  I made sure I washed all over the place before I went to bed, (which I was glad about or those sheets wouldn’t look so white by the morning!).

I woke up Chrimbo morning forgetting where I was.. I thought I was dreaming or something.   The day was just out of this world.. Chrimbo dinner – meat, gravy, potatoes, loads of veg….  apple sauce and pickled onions… The works!   I have NEVER eaten so much in all my life.  Then after Chrimbo dinner, Anthony and Susan gave me this Chrimbo card.. when I opened it I started crying… ONE HUNDRED NICKER!  In twenty pound notes!  I didn’t know what to say..I’ve never had that much money in the palm of my hand before!

‘I don’t know what to say!’ I said.

They just smiled and said ‘You don’t have to say anything, just make sure you spend that on yourself, and no one else’.

I cried.  I wished that Anthony and Susan were my ma and dad.   I wonder why they’re being so nice to me.. it’s not a natural thing for people to do where I’m concerned.

And then I cried again, ’cause I thought about me ma, alone at home with a hangover on Christmas day.   I haven’t even given her my prezzy. I was feeling dead guilty for feeling happy.  I shouldn’t feel happy.. I’d left me ma all by herself at a time when she needed me most.

Anthony knew what was up.   He offered to take me home to see me ma.  He said she’s welcome to come back and spend the rest of Chrimbo with them.

My house was cold and dark – no sign of Christmas..    I went into me ma’s room; it was empty (apart from a mop bucket full of sick).  I knew where she was.. she was back on the ale.  The note I left in the kitchen had moved onto the table, so she’d seen it. But she’d chosen not to come to see me.  I felt guilty and mad at the same time.

I cried again (I hate myself for crying).

Anthony asked if I wanted to go back to his house and finish Christmas.  I did.

I went back to the warm, friendly house filled with Christmas.   But my heart was empty… it was clear.. my ma didn’t give a f&ck about me.  I  hated her for that.

And I don’t know if I can carry on like I have been.  The knot in my stomach keeps causing tears, and I’m feeling so angry.  It’s just getting worse by the day.

 

 

Out of the works of the Scientology Volunteer ...

Haitian Earthquake - Image via Wikipedia

I’ve been on the computer in the library learning all about Haiti.     That big earthquake killed about ten-thousand people!  What if they were my cousins, and my nan and grandad?  What if there’s no one left in Haiti who would care for me and take me in?  What if they’re all dead and I didn’t even get to meet them?

What if the only person I’ve got left in the world is me ma? And she hasn’t come home again.    I’ve spent the last few nights worrying sick about her – what if she’s dead somewhere?  It’s not the first time she’s gone missing for days.  Last time I ended up calling the bizzies, and they came and took a statement – that was when they ended up putting me back into care again.  Me ma had said it was my fault I’d gone back into care, because I’d grassed her up to the bizzies.  But I hadn’t.. I was just worried she might be dead or something.

So this time I won’t call the bizzies.  If she’s not home by boxing day I’ll go and tell someone.. but not the bizzies.  I spent the afternoon in my bedroom getting my ma’s Chrimbo prezzy ready – if she decides to come home.  It’s just a fancy wooden chair I found in a skip.. but I’ve painted it white and used a little brush to put little flowers on it (I remember once she said she really liked flowers).    Once it was painted I sat on the bed and stared at it; it looked dead nice and new – I’m sure she’d love it!

Out the blue again.. the tears started, they fell out my eyes like a waterfall.  Once I started crying, I couldn’t stop.  I laid down on my bed and just cried and cried, until my pillow was soaked through.    I feel so alone.

I want my dad (even if he is a convicted murderer), I want to see my cousins and nan and grandad in Haiti (If they’re still alive from the earthquake)… I want me ma (But not as she is now).

Please God.. bring me ma back safely…I don’t want to be all alone for Christmas….

The Pump House - Photo by Jilly Gardiner

I arranged to meet Ray Moorland next to the Pump House on the Albert Dock.   It’s a pub now.    I stood for about ten minutes before he arrived.   In that ten minutes my mind was spinning.   What if I just left now with Regal before the fella came?   Or what if he just didn’t turn up?  Then I’d just have to take Regal back home with me and keep him… I’d still be able to cuddle up close to him at night and feel his warm fur against my chest.  I’d be able to watch his little legs trying to run while he was asleep, dreaming; chasing a cat or something.

God! I so wanted to turn around and walk straight home with Regal.   I looked down at him, it’s like he could sense how sad I was.  He stared up at me, and then jumped up at my legs, wagging his tail.  I bent down and tried to smile, ruffling the long fur on his little head.   It was then I spotted Ray, the fella who I met on the Albert Dock a few weeks before.  He’d signed my petition to save Regal, and dump Binny.   My heart was in my shoes.. I felt sick ’cause I knew this was it.   I really had to do it now.   It hit home that Regal was really going to leave me.

Ray smiled as he approached me, but when he saw my face he looked concerned.  He was a kind man, I knew it when I met him.   That’s how  I knew I could trust him to look after my little dog.   He gave me his address and told me that I can visit and walk Regal any time that I wanted to… but to make sure I phoned first, as he was a nurse at Whiston hospital and worked funny shifts.   Even though I was gutted about giving up Regal, I really had to hold my smile back… as Ray was about 6 feet 2 inches tall and  built like a brick shit house.. And he was A NURSE!  How mad was that!   I had visions of him in his little white nurses dress and tights.   I pursed my lips and tried to drown out my smiles.   Then I remembered why I was there, and I felt sick again. I picked Regal up and gave him a massive cuddle.. so tight that he gave a little yelp.   I just didn’t want to let go.    Ray gave me all the time I needed.. he was a good man.

Finally Ray took him from my arms.   I breathed out slowly, trying to keep the tears away.   I wiped my arm across my face, ‘That breeze off the Mersey doesn’t half make my eyes water!’   I said. 

‘Yeah you’re right, it does it to me too’, he smiled.   I could tell he knew I was lying, but he didn’t let on. I watched Regal and Ray as they walked off along the dock.   Regal was pulling back on his lead, looking back at me.  I couldn’t watch him anymore… that Mersey breeze really does play havoc with your eyes!

See ya Regal…… Miss you loads… x

After I’d made my decision, I pretty much knew I had to stick to it.   I slept with Regal in my arms that night.  Isn’t it funny how dogs just love you no matter what?

I planned to do it the next day, but bottled out and took him for a long walk along the Pier Head.

But today I knew I had to do it….

So I pulled out a screwed up piece of paper from a pair of jeans I wore last week (I’d been wearing them for nearly 2 weeks, so I thought it was about time I changed them before they walked out of the house and jumped into the Mersey all on their own!).  

 I took the piece of paper, stuffed it into my coat pocket and walked down to the phone box with Regal.    I put the money in the slot and dialled the number on the piece of paper.   A man answered on the other end.

I swallowed hard and spoke ‘Hello, is that Ray Moorland?’

‘Yes?’

‘I’m the lad who was doing the petition about saving my dog, Regal, on the Albert Dock the other week’.

‘Oh yes?’  He sounded surprised.

‘Did you mean what you said about looking after my dog if I couldn’t keep him?’

There was a silence, I just bet he didn’t mean it after all!

‘Yes I did mean it, is everything okay?’   What a d*ckhead question that was! Of course everything wasn’t okay! Does he think I’d be giving my dog away, who I love with all my heart if everything was okay!??

I swallowed the lump in my throat and tried to stay calm, ‘I can’t keep him.. I wondered if you’d look after him for me?  Give him a good home?’

The voice on the other end was soft and gentle ‘Of course I will’.

I felt a mixture of relief and devastation.   Tears welled in my eyes like a girl.  I held them back as I spoke, ‘There’s one condition though!’

‘Go on?’ He said patiently.

‘You must let me visit! You must let me come and take him for walks sometimes and stuff!’   Tears started to run down my face now, but I managed not to let the fella on the phone know.

The fella laughed gently, ‘I insist on it!’.  

He could hear my tears then.   So relieved, but so sad all at the same time.   Regal would be safe from the hands of Binny, but I wouldn’t have him anymore.  

Everything was going to be all right for him.   He was going to have a dogs life… a great life!…

Our Regal

I made the biggest mistake of my life tonight…

I went and had a bath, and left Regal in my bedroom.   I was just lying there in the cold water – No hot water in our house, so I’m only minutes in the bath! If I can get away with it I just wipe myself all over with the end of a wet towel (but every once in a while I have to grit my teeth and have a bath – it’s the only way I can get the dirt out of all my creases!). 

While I was lying there with my teeth chattering,   I heard Regal barking.  I darted out of the cold water and ran out of the bathroom, dripping wet and with my tackle out for all to see!   There was Binny on the landing, standing outside my bedroom door, staring into my bedroom.  He was winding Regal up – barking like dog.    I ran to the door and pushed him aside; running in to get Regal, who was barking and growling.   Binny laughed, pointing down at my tackle.

‘I’ve put maggots on the end of my fishing rod bigger than that!’ He laughed.  It was only then that I remembered I was b*llock naked!  I picked up Regal and held him in front of my tackle so Binny couldn’t see.

‘Get out!’ I screamed.   Binny threw his head back and laughed.  ‘

Go away’, I screamed.  Binny laughed even more as he turned and walked down the hallway into me ma’s room.   I kicked my bedroom door shut with my foot and dived on the bed with Regal, holding him tight against me.  He was warm against my cold, wet skin.     I started crying then; crying loads and loads… couldn’t stop.

It was then I realised what I had to do.. I had to do the right thing by Regal.  I love that dog with all my heart, but I had to forget about what I wanted, and do what was best for him.  

I just kept cuddling him until his warm, soft hair was soaked from my wet skin and my tears…..

Me ma wasn’t home.. probably doing the same as Binny.. propping up some bar somewhere!

I went straight to my room and cried for about 2 hrs on my bed.  If the Devil really exists, then Binny is it!   I cried until I fell asleep…

I woke a short time later,  hearing little cries.  I couldn’t make them out at first.   I got up and walked to the door, opening it to the landing.  It was coming from downstairs.

As I walked quietly down the stairs, the cries got louder and louder.

‘Ma?’ I said quietly.. nothing..

I walked towards the kitchen.. the cries were louder now.  My heart started to pound in realisation of what I thought it was… They were dog’s cries!  As I entered the kitchen, I hear they were coming from the pantry!  I dived over and swung open the door…. A box!   I flung open the box, and there was my Regal, looking up at me giving little excited yelps now!

I scooped him up and held him against me.  his tail was wagging, and his tongue was soaking my face as he drenched me.  I was ecstatic!  I cried even more than before now!     I just couldn’t believe it!

As I took him safely to my room and we both lay cuddled on the bed, I thought of Binny.. he was playing mind games with me.   I was surprised that I didn’t hate him any less, even though he hadn’t actually killed Regal.  In fact it made me hate him even more for making me go through the pain of losing Regal and thinking he was dead.

I WILL get him back! He WILL be sorry he ever came into our lives!