The man in the doorway
I opened the door and saw a half-naked man in front of me. Well, at least the half I could see was naked, and I can’t really speak for the other half because I quickly averted my eyes.
“Put some clothes on!” I yelled.
My mind went back to the exciting first few days. I met my new cellmate. We had quite a bit in common, but nothing to talk about. He only lasted about four months. He was moved to a different cell block.
I remember the first time the alarm sounded. Everyone was ushered to the yard in the cold with scarcely any time to grab clothes. The lights and sirens blaring through the crisp air made it impossible to get any sleep afterward, as if that had ever been easy anyway.
We were allowed a few amenities, but anybody caught with contraband was immediately taken to the office. The guards could make life miserable for those that broke the rules.
I tried getting on community service duty, but every time it came around, I was assigned somewhere else.
After four long years, not much had changed. I was moved to a lower security prison. The guards were more lenient. The bathrooms were nicer.
I suppose it was my fault for entering a community bathroom with any sense of propriety. I was a prisoner. The first night after I got out seemed perfectly normal until 2:00 am. I walked out of the front door, spread my arms, and exclaimed, “NOBODY CARES THAT I’M DOING THIS!”
I was free. I was off campus.