Sunday, July 19, 2015

You Just Got Out of Prison. Now What?

Carlos and Roby are two ex-convicts with a simple mission: picking up inmates on the day they’re released from prison and guiding them through a changed world.

...Carlos handed Hammock the key and asked if he wanted to pop the trunk. But the key wasn’t a key; it was a button. After squinting at it for a second, Hammock handed it back and said, ‘‘I wouldn’t know what to do with that.’’

He’d been in prison for 21 years.

...Acosta describes stopping for breakfast near the prison that first morning as if it were a horrifying fever dream: He kept looking around the restaurant for a sniper, as in the chow hall in prison, and couldn’t stop gawking at the metal knives and forks, ‘‘like an Aztec looking at Cortez’s helmet,’’ he says. It wasn’t until he got up from the booth and walked to the men’s room, and a man came out the door and said, ‘‘How you doin’?’’ and Acosta said, ‘‘Fine,’’ that Acosta began to feel, even slightly, like a legitimate part of the environment around him. He’d accomplished something. He’d made a treacherous trip across an International House of Pancakes. He’d peed.

More:  http://www.nytimes.com/2015/07/19/magazine/you-just-got-out-of-prison-now-what.html

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