Friday, August 17, 2007

Finding Ferret

Daring. Full of Bravado. Like some Don Quixote attacking a windmill. I trudged downtown after parking at the post office a moment ago. I was determined to find Ferret. Not long into my walk, I ran into Dexter, George's mentally retarded, but oh so funny and kind cohort.

"Seen Ferret?" I asked.

Dexter turned towards the river and pointed. "That way," he said after asking me for a few dollars. I continued on with my march after putting my wallet back into my back pocket now less five dollars. Into the woods I went behind the railroad tracks searching for Ferret's campsite. I finally gave up after looking for thirty minutes, scratched by underbrush and weary from the heat.

"Damn you Ferret," I said. "Where in the hell are you camped?"

Sitting in front of the old depot eating sardines and crackers, I finally saw Ferret come walking down the railroad tracks. It didn't take him long to notice me. He was drunk and reeked of alcohol. In his hand was a sack of old clothes.

"What's up?" Ferret asked, his eyes red from a hangover, as he approached me.

"Got worried about you," I replied. "Wanted to see if you are okay."

Ferret sat down on the bench next to me.

"I'm just glad I don't have to work anymore," Ferret said. "Work is for idiots."

The irony of Ferret's predicament didn't escape me. Not working and not taking his medications has forced him to live outside near the river like some wild animal. I almost envied Ferret as it would be one hell of an adventure and camping experience.

"You getting enough to eat?" I asked.

Ferret patted his belly assuring me that he was well fed.

"You haven't talked to Monte lately about moving back in?" I then asked.

"That son of a bitch can kiss my ass," Ferret said angrily. "He threw me out of the house."

I initially helped Ferret find this living arrangement. Monte is George's cousin and agreed to board Ferret in a spare room for rent money as long as Ferret stayed sober and worked. Ferret couldn't live up to his end of the bargain and got thrown out.

"Let's go get drunk," Ferret then said. "It would be like old times."

I cringed.

"You are already drunk," I replied. "You reek of it."

"Well then," Ferret said. "Let's get even drunker. I'm paying."

I won't lie and say the offer wasn't tempting. I would love nothing more than to meet up with George and have a listless day of drinking beer and cavorting with my old shopping center Piggly Wiggly friends.

"Come on," Ferret said as he stood up. "The convenience store is across the street with ice cold beer."

I sighed and wanted to run. I realized then that I shouldn't have found Ferret. It brought back too many old urges and longings. My homeless life of being a drunkard will forever haunt me in the wanton abandon and the lack of responsibility in which I lived my life then.

"Go get us some beer and I will wait here," I finally replied.

Ferret disappeared around the corner of the depot to cross the highway. I quickly grabbed my backpack and disappeared myself beyond the bank and made a beeline to my car. It was all too much to handle. And to think that I have been thinking that I am over my drinking urges and could handle them. My past came back to haunt me in a gloriously negative fashion today. My randy insolence with regards to my alcoholism hit hard and I went slinking home -- slouching towards Bethlehem as the Yeats' poem would say.


Tiffanie said...

Have you talked to Wanda lately?

Andrew said...


I haven't spoken to Wanda in a few weeks. I need to call her and catch up on things.

Whitney said...

It is hard to skirt with a life style that you know is bad for you but also holds such romance. Good for you for leaving when you did. I can't help thinking that maybe you might want to think about cutting ties with these guys, Ferret, George, and all since they only encourage you into a lifestyle that you still fancy but know is bad. I was once told that the friends you hold help to shape you into who you are, if you want to change then you need to change your friends who aren't supportive.

amelia said...

Stay strong!!!


Did the confrontation of the alcoholic demons wither away your wanderlust adventure?
Glad you stayed strong..I'm proud of you over here in chitown.

Ellie said...

Temptation. Oh, it is so hard to come over. Good for you to realize how wrong it would be to go off and get all drunk. Hang in there. Sounds like you are doing great.

Leann said...

You did well my friend. You may still have the urges but also have the strength to deny them. Kudos to you.

I don't get to read you as often as I'd like but know I'm out here in cyberland praying for you and thinking of you.

Anonymous said...


I've also been reading your blog. I think it is really great. Your compassion for people who are still struggling with their addictions is really amazing. I went back over the years and read your posts and as the saying goes, "You've come a long way baby!" Just remember that. Material trappings aside you just sound so content and you deserve that after what you've been through. Perhaps it is time to stay away from the people who are still drugging. I know you cannot force them into a treatment program or to get a sponsor.

BTW I noticed something else - You put your real picture up!!!

Barb said...

Sometimes the urge to rise above where you've been sustains you for just a moment. During that one moment, you bolted. I am very proud of your resolve~ You should be a social worker/writer...sounds like you have that gift!


Who'is'whO said...

would you appreciate my comment? even if i say that your blog is a crap???!!!
i'm kidding...
i didn't read it.
don't give up fighting against alcoholism!!!