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The First 22 Days
June 16, 2015 | 0 Comments
It was a dark day when I was thrown into that cell. I was with 11 other women, including the “friend” I was caught that morning with. The “friend” left two days later, and I was alone.
I was with 11 other foreigners from all over the world, including Kenya, Ethiopia, and several other countries around Africa. They were incredibly supportive and such beautiful women.
Days went by without me using the bathroom, eating, and I was barely drinking any water. I smoked cigarette after cigarette, crying. Every day I would be called up to the so-called detectives office to be interrogated in the harshest way possible. I was yelled at, screamed at, was shown a gun to have me admit to something I didn’t do, and I was threatened numerous amounts of times. They would do this to me several times a day for days on end, at all hours of the day making sure when I’ll be least comfortable, including after midnight.
They stripped me of my rights, I wasn’t allowed to make any phone calls, I wasn’t allowed my lawyer, and the worst part is, no one would come to visit me. The only people who knew at this point were my aggrieved uncles. The detectives had me sign my interrogation papers knowingly I did not read Arabic, only to find out days later I signed confessions I did not make.
I was desperate to get my voice out, I was desperate to get out.
The women in my cell left one by one, and a few days later I found myself alone.
It was a dark room, with the smallest window at the door for cops to pass by and check up on me every few hours. Some were good to me, some were, of course, complete assholes. The cell was filthy, the walls covered in appalling graffiti, and the “Arabic” bathroom in the corner heaved the most disgusting of smells all day. I had few pairs of clothing I could change into, and showered probably three or four times in the 22 days I spent there.
At some point, it was me and a gorgeous Ethiopian whose name I’ll keep to myself forever to hide her identity. But she was beautiful. She would take care of me, making sure I ate at least once every two days. I still think of her every now and then, hoping she’s okay..
22 days stuck in a moment. It was exhausting, tiring, and my body ached. I slept on the floor, as there were no mattresses. It was hard and cold. The ants crawling around me eventually became my friends when I fed them the various foods the officers would try to feed me. I didn’t have a pillow, I barely had my basic needs. I read book after book to try to escape the harsh reality I was in. But it was impossible. It was incredibly impossible.
I wrote so much my hand ached. I read now what I wrote and realize I wasn’t stable in my head. I had so many thoughts, feelings, and fears pouring out of me I suppose it just drove me mad.
I was alone, and I was scared.
22 days later, a police officer woke me up to tell me I’m being transferred. I was even more scared. I was shaking, and didn’t know what to do. I was being transferred from a jail to an official prison. Oh God, and now I knew it was going to be a long road before I could see the sun again.