Friday, 20 April 2012

PLANNING AN ESCAPE

By now, most children in North American schools have resigned themselves to the routine of classes and homework. In a majority of situations, these students are able to return home each afternoon. Others aren't so fortunate.

Back in April of 1969, I dreaded another long exile from home. My parents sent me to Jericho Hill School for the Deaf and Blind, five hundred miles from home. At the time, they were convinced by government bureaucrats that only specialized teachers could educate sight-impaired children.

From my Deliverance from Jericho (Six Years in a Blind School) memoir, here's a vignette depicting how deeply returning to that institution depressed me and how strongly tempted I wished to escape.

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Easter ended far too soon for me. I stood in the day coach's doorway, gazing out at Edmonton, and a strong temptation gripped me. "What if I escaped and ran away?" I thought. An argument raged in my mind between the practical side and my emotions. Finally, I gave in to the inevitable and shuffled toward the seat assigned to me. I recalled how humiliating my last attempt to escape Jericho had been.

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Deliverance from Jericho abounds with vignettes of what life was like in that government-run institution. These range from poignant experiences of homesickness to hilarious incidents of mischief. Please feel free to click on the link to my books or contact me directly for more information about them.