Any time I go away whether on business or pleasure, I am always met with a new letter from Dad upon my return. A little calling card from the cross I bear as a way of grounding me. This time my trip was to Paris for Christmas. A more selfish and decadent spending of the holidays could not be found. Dad's card simply contained his brief note, "Send money. Love, Daddy." No thank you. No please. No sentimentality.
I sent him some just before leaving so maybe he hadn't gotten it yet when he sent his card. Or maybe he had and it wasn't enough. It is football season, after all. Parlays aren't free. Though since he is in solitary confinement until August for his assault against an officer I'm not sure he's even able to gamble. Either way, I don't care. An extra $20 here or $40 there isn't going to hurt me after the major cash drain that was a six day holiday in the City of Lights. A lovely trip it was and I made sure to send Dad several post cards so maybe he can make the journey in his mind.
For him and other inmates, what is worth more: money for the commissary or communication with someone from the Free World? If given the choice I am fairly certain they would give up the former in a heartbeat. What Dad most complains about is not hearing from his family so I know the best gift I can give him has nothing to do with cash. And when his notes are a brief demand of "Send money," well, I will. After all, I'm in the Free World. I traveled to Paris with my husband by my side and 2008 is looking to be our best year ever. So my "cross to bear" isn't a heavy load. I'll humbly carry it as a reminder of where I came from and how far one can fall.
And, Dad, there's another $20 on its way. Thank you. Love, Kambri.