Saturday, January 11, 2014

Poverty Made Me a Criminal

Living in this great country has one major disadvantage: the lack of public transportation. If you live in or near
a city, this is less of a problem, but in the rest of the country owning a car is a necessity if you ever hope to get a job.

At one time I considered myself lucky to have a car that was paid for. It was rusty and dented, but it ran very well.

But keeping and driving the car  turned me into a law-breaker. I have always prided myself on my honesty - I do not steal, sell drugs, or litter. But  when I saw a patrol car (on the way to get my nails done, snark) my heart started racing and I got a sick feeling in my stomach.

Why? Because I was a criminal, a scofflaw - I was driving an unregistered and uninsured vehicle.

That ate at me. I never went out without a pressing need - my son's doctor appointment or groceries. I imagine I could have parked the car and begged a ride, but I was so tired and ashamed of asking others for help.

It was foolish and I risked getting caught and paying costly fines, but what little pride I had left was at stake.

I'm glad I didn't get caught.