Thursday, March 3, 2016

A Mennonite in Agony

On the way back to the apartment building George tried to convince me, not to go to work. “Anna, you have been through so much, don’t you think you deserve a day off? You should come over and let me take care of you. We could hang out, watch movies and order in, or something. It sounds like the weather is going to get pretty nasty tonight anyway.”

What exquisite agony i felt. Let me take care of you, such words had never been spoken to women by a man in my world during my entire existence. I was so overwhelmed with temptation, it physically hurt. But I felt like I had to go to work. I felt bad enough that George had missed work because of me and I wanted to make up for all the lost hours of work that I had caused.

I felt guilty and blamed no one but myself for that. I thought “It’s Friday, I can work one more shift and then I can sleep, eat and rest for two whole days.”

George gave Christina a disappointed side look and said, “Well, I tried.”

Christina looked at me then back at him with her eyebrows raised as he climbed out of the car. I was still feeling emotional from the whole experience. I got out, gave him a hug, and said, “Thank you for everything,” as a tear rolled down my face again.

He wiped the tear off my cheek with his thumb and said, “Well if you insist, but just so you know that I think that your health is more important than any job, and I am a phone call away In case you change your mind.”

“Okay, thank you,” I answered and got back into Christina’s car. We went to her mom’s house until it was time to go to work. Her mom also tried to convince me not to go to work, “Are you sure you should be going to work this afternoon Anna? You have had a really long day already.”

“I feel a bit better now. I think I will be fine, now that I don’t have to worry about going to court anymore. It will make this day go by faster. I can rest tomorrow, after clean my apartment,” I answered.

“Well, you shouldn’t feel bad about taking a sick day. Your health is more important than that job,” she said as she packed us both a lunch to take to work.

That night Christina worked in the back with Sam the dude. I was the only person working in the sewing department. It was so quiet I had a hard time staying awake while I was working, as I began to feel worse.

During the first break, Christina came to check on me and invited me to go for a coffee with her and her friends during the lunch hour.

I did not feel well at all. My whole body was still aching and I felt like I was getting a fever. I told her, “No thanks, I have a big headache, I just want to stay and rest my eyes for a bit, you go ahead,” I answered.

She went to take her break in the lunchroom while I rested my head on my arms and dozed off into a half-sleep, dreaming that I was floating in ice-cold water.

I jumped up when Derek the supervisor throw a roll of carpet onto the table next to me, “Sleeping on the job are you?” He asked.

I panicked and thought I was in big trouble as I tried to figure out how long I had been asleep.

“It’s okay Anna, I won't tell. Can you help me cut some of these?” He asked while pointing to the carpet.

“Sure,” I answered nervously. I felt extremely light-headed when I stood up, but it passed while I helped Derek cut the carpet. He did all the heavy lifting and smiled at me every time I looked at him. When we finished he said, “Thanks for your help Anna” and took the pieces of carpet to the back.

As I watched him walk away I thought “Hmmm… okay, I guess he isn't such a ‘schinda’ (highly disrespectful person) after all” and got back to sewing. I began to notice that my fever was getting worse. I felt hot one minute then shivering cold the next.

At lunch break when all the machines had stopped running and everything was quiet. Christina left to go for coffee with her friends. I moved over to where the air vents blew the warm air out.

I tried to keep myself distracted by reading some of the Spanish words I had written down of a song. I had heard the word entrégate many times in Spanish songs and every time I heard that word I wondered what it meant. I thought “what better time to look it up in my Spanish-English dictionary then now?”

I was so proud and still amazed at the fact that I was able to read when I learned that the word entrégate meant surrender.

As I thought about the meaning of entrégate and how I would use it in a sentence my fever was causing my thoughts to get all mixed up. I began to think “I am soon going to wake up at home in Mexico and realize that all of this is not real, that it was all just a long dream.”

I folded my arms on the table and laid my head down on my arms. I woke up on what I thought was the same boat I had drifted on to Posen Land so many times, but never actually got there. It wasn’t a boat anymore; it had turned into a big ship with a long narrow hallway in the middle of it, with many doors on each side facing me.

While on the ship floating on the water, I heard a voice coming from a far distance, “Why do you keep coming back here, there is nothing here,” echoed my fula’s voice across the ship.

Coming from a door on my left, I heard, “Don’t worry Anna, just breathe, and everything will work out the way it’s supposed too,” said George.

Coming from a door on my right, “Entrégate Anita, tu mamá te necesita (just surrender Anna, your mom needs you)” said the voice Marco Antonio Solis who I thought was Jesus. The waves began to get bigger and bigger rocking the ship back and forth causing loud banging noises as the doors opened and shut.

I heard voices yelling from all the doors, “Anna Wall stay here… stay here, wonderful! Wonderful!” followed by a voice I recognized but couldn’t figure out who it could be, “Anna! Anna!” He called, as the ship was about to tip over I turned around and saw Mark standing there, handcuffed and all chained up, holding a bomb in his hands. In a calm low voice, he said, “I love you, Anna, all I wanted was your flesh,” as he dropped the bomb.

The sound I thought was the bomb exploding while the ship tipped over was a cup hitting the tabletop very close to me. I took a deep startling breath as I opened my eyes and saw the words Tim Hortons on the cup in front of me.

“I’m sorry Anna, I didn’t mean to startle you, I brought you a cappuccino,” said Sam the dude.

As I rubbed my eyes to see where I was and what was going on, my heartbeat began to slow down when I realized that it wasn't real, that I had just had a weird bad dream.

Sam pulled himself up onto the table, looking down at me he asked, “How are you holding up Anna?”

“Ah… I am not sure, I have a big headache,” I answered.

“Here let me open that for you,” he said, as he picked up the cup, opened it, and slid it across the table toward me.

“Thanks,” I said, as I picked it up and took a sip.

“You’ve had a long day maybe you should go home and rest,” he said.

Just as I said, “I think I can make it, we only have a few hours left.” The lights started flickering on and off, and suddenly the whole place went dark.

“It must be the strong winds that they were talking about on the radio earlier. I heard that it was supposed to get really windy out, tonight,” Sam explained as we heard Hilary’s deep voice through the speakers, “Could everyone please come to the front office?”

I immediately thought “oh no!” Where is Christina! I still hadn't forgotten about my feeling earlier and was worried that she might get into an accident or something. I grabbed my bag and followed Sam to the front office.

When we walked through the door I looked everywhere for Christina but I didn’t see her, she wasn’t back yet. Hilary began to explain that a tree had fallen onto some hydro wires and that it might take a couple of days before the power would be back on.

“I would advise you all to go home immediately before it gets worse,” Hilary explained.

I looked at Sam and said, “Christina is not back from the coffee shop and she is my ride.”

“Don’t worry Anna, I can give you a ride home,” Sam explained.

I got all nervous and scared as I heard him talk. I thought “I don’t really know him that well, and what if he decides to take me somewhere to show me a time of my life? ah…” I said, “I will just wait for Christina,” as the phone rang and Hilary answered it.

After Hilary hung up the phone he explained, “Anna that was Christina, she will go home from the coffee shop, and if you could catch a ride home with Sam.”

I thought, “oh crap!” as I looked over at Sam. He had the biggest smile on his face I had ever seen. As I nervously considered accepting the ride I thought “I am going to ride home with an almost stranger the same day a man goes to jail for stalking me. Dios Mio what else is going to happen to me today?”

As we all exited the building through the door in a neat line. I thought, “if Christina thinks it is safe for me to go with Sam then it should be fine. If she didn’t trust him she wouldn’t ask me to accept a ride from him” as I followed Sam to his car.

We couldn't see anything the wind was so strong I had a hard time keeping my eyes open as the snow was blowing into them. Sam ran to his car, opened the door, waited until I got in and closed it. His car was all shiny from the inside, it smelled like it had just been cleaned. I felt bad for getting snow on the clean mat when I stepped on it.

He started the car and as we sat there waiting for it warm up a bit. He asked, “So what are you doing this weekend?”

“I’m going to sleep, clean, read, and learn some more Spanish.”

“Is that the only thing you do in your spare time?”

“Yes, well in between dealing with a crazy stalker man, going to court, and stuff like that.”

He laughed and said, “Yea, that must be something else. I want you to know that we are not all crazy like that. Just in case, you were wondering.”

I thought “well I actually was wondering and I really hope you aren't” as I nervously laughed and said, “I sure hope not.”

He laughed and said, “Well for what it's worth, thanks for accepting my offer to drive you home tonight. Too bad it such crappy weather, or we could go out for a drink or something.”

I smiled and just nodded my head, as I thought “not a chance dude no drinks for me. I need to go home and sleep for a couple of days.”

My heart started pounding with paranoia as he backed out of the parking spot and started driving forward. I thought “I will closely pay attention to where he is driving,” and my mind went places I had no control over.

“I really need a mason jar! I wish I had a mason jar with me. I should carry one around with me at all times, just in case. Anna, watch where he is taking you” I thought as I looked at him then back out the window, but I couldn’t see a thing everything was white.

Looking back at him. He had a serious look on his face he was concentrating on driving.

I looked back out the window and thought “he is a nice man. He is George’s friend, stop thinking bad things about him” as he was keeping the car from getting blown into the ditch. 

My mind went back to thinking, “but if he tries anything, I will just have to use my bag of books to defend myself” and panicked with paranoia when I realized that I hadn't been paying attention to where he was taking me for a while again. When he pulled over and stopped the car. I had no idea where we were. Click here to continue reading my story.

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