Recovery Ranch (Excerpt From Memoir) Read Count : 13

Category : Books-Non-Fiction

Sub Category : Biography

December 2009

     "Here she comes…" I hear one of the two say as they wait for me as I struggle with my boots. It's the guy I’d seen in the upstairs window I thought was a girl when I  first arrived. I'll tell him about that later to get him back for calling me, "She.

     My left foot is half a size bigger than my right. Unfortunately, stores don't sell shoes individually, so I had to cram my size eleven and a half foot into a size eleven boot. Once I break my finger-shoehorn, I have to swallow my pride as this kid refers to me as a "she." I'm still clueless about who's who, and can't remember most of their names. They lead me across a a narrow path between the snow leading toward a rusted, red gate on the side of the house. . 

     The house sits on the edge of a giant hill one could call a cliff. The property line surrounds a large piece of land, including the cliff and land below. The red gate runs all the way around this part of the property. I still don't know what we're doing. Federline swings the gate open while I wait for him to turn towards me, saying, "Welcome… to Jurassic Park."

    Instead, I'm disappointed when he tells me, "C’mon."

    The one leading us is Federline I come to find out: also the one who had an insult coming from me. He has on the same a baby blue New Era hat with the sticker still on the tilted bill—every jock wore these hats like this in middle school and it's now popular in the hip-hop scene. His hat matches his t-shirt and faded, baggy jeans. None of his attire takes away from his tiny diamond studded earrings he probably bought at Claire’s. There's my insult, just have to wait for the right time. 

     The other one is Sonny. We spoke briefly last night in the van about Ableton, a music making computer software, that he said he could teach me. I was only familiar with other similar products, but never learned Ableton, which Brianna also knew. 

     She had come over one day as I had just finished downloading the software and was playing around with it. I fell in love with her that day, after she told me to "Get up."

     In less than a minute, she had two songs playing together simultaneously at the same tempo, the right key, and in the same eight-bar time signature. In most cases, it was me who showed someone up in music, but this was not one of those cases. 

     "Er… I love you?" I said. 

     She laughed, still looking at the screen, then said, "I'll show you how it's done."

     "Sounds good."

     That never happened, though. 

            *  *  *  *

     Brody and Jimmy walk me back and forth, trekking across the lengthy snow-covered property. It reminded me of walking across long fields at summer camp, which this place could be if there was a sun. The two guys show me everything that needs to be done every time I feed the animals, which would be every morning for the next two weeks. 

     Back inside, my guard is up, giving the guys the third-degree. I have to make sure they are telling the truth about having to be in charge of feeding the animals every morning for the next two weeks. I've hung around guys before and I know about initiation pranks, but I'm not going to get bitched into doing something I don't have to do. Secretly, it's my little way of showing them I'm not stupid, and that I'm smarter than to fall for that crap. 

     Compared to the joke I'd been in high school, who would've fallen for this without question, I had made a complete one-eighty. I'm not the bitch or pussy my "friends" saw me as anymore. This is my chance to start anew, with a group of guys who don't have a clue who I used to be. 

     "It's tradition, dude! We all did it!" one says. I still don't know anyone's name yet. 

     "Man, all right. But I swear, if I'm being played…" I shake my head, as if I can't say how bad the consequence will be, when in reality, I cannot think of anything to say. 

     This isn't me, I tell myself. I also have the feeling they know this too. While shaking my head, I smile at them. 

     They laugh while heading out the door for a cigarette. That smile was a good call. 

     I wouldn't have admitted it then, but I was still the same person I had been back in high school. I thought I was sticking up for myself, making sure I wasn't being "punked," but to them, I must have looked pretty pathetic and shaking with insecurity. They probably saw right through me. Well, I know one of them did, but I'll come back to him. 


  • Jul 19, 2019

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