We haven’t seen him for two whole years. My cousin locked up in jail for attempted murder. We signed all papers and we were on our way to Delano, California. I wouldn’t have imagined such beauty we encountered on our way. It felt like a trip we were never going to forget.
We woke up around five a.m. sleepy and shaken from the noise my mother was making. “Wake Up! We don’t want to get there late.” My sister and I got up and got ready. When we were done we could smell the fresh cups of coffee awaiting our taste buds. We needed our energy, we needed our time. How could destiny be so harsh on someone so intelligent? He grew up alone without a stable mother he wanted to fit in. He wanted to be loved.
My mother was overcome with grief and decided to cry her heart out before we arrived at the prison. All we could see were mountains, grape vines, cars, everyone going their separate ways. Our first stop was at a gas station near Bakersfield. Mom bought tacos, cookies, and 3 fruit smoothies. We walked towards a bench and ate our breakfast there while feeling the sudden breeze that swept our souls. Quiet, we were all pensive imagining how he was. It meant the world to us to know that after so long there was a chance to see him.
Both my mother and sister brought their California i.d. and I took my school i.d. so we woud go inside. We got into a line to receive a slip which told us what number we were. We waited until long after 11:00am. Waiting for almost 4 hours we witnessed the solitary world of prison life. I couldn’t imagine living there for the rest of my life amongst vandals who chose the wrong path. I felt deep pain within wanting to free my cousin. “Steve! How have you been I’ve missed you.” I cried We hugged and I felt content remembering when we were young and free from everything.
We walked inside a room with men dressed in blue who looked young. We went up to a counter so they could assign us a table so we talked for a long time about recent events in my school and life. I watched as my mother caressed his hands lovingly. He spoke directly at me telling me to stay away from drugs and people who want to bring me down. I promised him I would because I wanted him to be proud of me.
After much conversation it was time to leave. I left stronger, more sure of myself. He helped me overcome the desire to work hard and be someone in life. I learned that in whatever situation you may be there’s always that glimmer of light at the end of the tunnel. The sun was setting over the horizon another day, another memory, another dream. My family trip to Delano, California meant the world to me and my family.
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