I’m so sorry to disappoint you all. I’d like to think Miles is sorry too. (See my post “Today Miles pitched up to make a difference in his own life”.)

Well, he did … but. I’ve just called to inquire about him on his second day in a detox programme, to be told: “I’m sorry to have to disappoint you, sir, but he left yesterday afternoon. He signed himself out.”

This makes me a damn fool. I feel heart-sore. Physically heart-sore.

There is, she said, a history of this. He has two chances a year, shows a conviction to change, to rehabilitate but when the crunch comes, he checks out after a day or two, says “I’m not ready for this” and goes. He’s done this seven or eight times to date. Sometimes “they” do this countless times and then, when you least expect it, some of them see it through. And after that, after the rehab that follows, some of them stay clean. Not many, mind you. Just so that we know what we’re up against here …

I will keep you posted should there at any stage be any progress worth getting excited about. For now, the only place Miles could possibly be is back on the street again.

You may find him hassling you when you park your car at some stage.

Damn, damn, damn, damn.

But I’ll still give him the time of day when next I bump into him. As the lady said: “There is hope, sir, the fact that he came here means he does want to sort himself out. It was his choice to come. Maybe next time he’ll have the courage to stay.”

Hope, yes. If nothing else right now.

So there he goes, back to the backpackers, back to lice or, for all we know, a room and a bed and an old man with an agenda.

To be continued (perhaps).

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Tony Jackman

Tony Jackman

Tony Jackman is a journalist, budding playwright and sometime chef. He's written two plays, An Influence of Ghosts and Blue Train Coming, and back in the day wrote loads of songs. He paints a bit in watercolours...

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