Callahan

We are woken up at 5:30 am to prepare for Callahan inspection. No shoes under your bed, and lockers can’t be buldging. The staff puts bed linen that belongs to you in storage bags and we put our stuff in the big bucket on wheels and they store the container in the living room.

The living room is closed for the day when it’s Callahan inspection. The only room available is the cafeteria. Most woman leave for the day, so out of 200 woman, there’s about 125. The activities coordinator has a list of things to do for entertainment. Theres uno, bingo, checkers, and monopoly; we all have to work together is the main goal.

The day is long, the bathrooms are shut down at 9am, and the private bathrooms are still available to use. Callahan is over at 4:30pm. They take the whole day to inspect the shelter. They inspect for roaches, bedbugs, and holes in the walls. They make sure that there is no paint chipping from the ceiling, and test the fire alarms. They check the emergency exit as well.

My first Callahan inspection I had nothing to put in storage. I didnt have any sheets on my bed. I would sleep on the plastic that covered the bed, and I was sleeping in my clothes, because I didnt have sweat pants to sleep in. So I rolled out of bed washed my face, and brushed my teeth, and did my hair for the day. I skipped breakfast completely, and I sat in the waiting area until I found Ruby, and went for a cup of coffee and a cigarette.

Then Ruby left for the day to go to her program in Crown heights Brooklyn. I was left alone to fend for myself. I didnt join in any group activities, I sat at a table with my legal pad and wrote nonsense. I was still kind of going through a pyschoisis, so my mind was else where.

Its difficult to maintain when you have psychotic behavior. The medication I was put on is slow acting, I had had just had my haldol shot, so I would scribble on the legal pad lyrics still hoping to break into song writing as a gig. I had made it up in my mind that I was going to research in the computer room that I was going to send Diddy my handwritten poetry. With no address to send solicited mail, I was a mess for lack of a better word.

I spent my first Callahan scribbling on a legal pad, and watching the woman gather around the first two tables in the cafeteria and play bingo. There where no prizes to be won, it was just a way to kill time, while Callahan was going on.

Callahan is every 6 months. I find it to be a hardship for the maintenance to have to prepare for the inspection. They vigorously clean the building already, but 3 months before the next callahan the inside of the building got a pain job. The hallways are now a bright yellow color, and since we the clients have left the building due to quarinitine, they are taking the time out to paint the dorms.

We never ended u having Callahan because of coronavirus. DHS ended up cancelling the inspection. But I guarantee when everything is said and done, and we are back in Susans place, we are going to have Callahan, and Im prepared to entertain myself with now having a laptop.

The day stops for several hours when there’s an inspection. No one is moving, and no one is being taken on a van request to a government building. The clinic is still open, but the medicine room is closed for the day, with having to open 3 times during the day starting at 8am for a hour and a half. All medication is handed out after Callahan.

The day is bleak for lack of a better word. The woman just play bingo, or just play uno to pass the time while Mecca lays out the ground rules for playing the game that is being set up to play. No one is to crowd each other. You can only play one round, so insure every body gets a chance to play the game. If there are any fights yours to leave the cafeteria and wait in AWOL. Thats only if security has to break u an argument. The last time there was Callahan everybody played nicely, and got along.

The population of Susans place is mostly Spanish speaking. So everybody pretty much gets along with each other. Susans place isn’t high octane with fist fights, a few psychotic episodes may happen here an there, where the ambulence is called and someone is taken to be admitted into the hospital, but on few occasions does that happen.

Im not really looking forward to Callahan…

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