décembre 05, 2003

sunshine and good times

right. so now I've dealth with the bad - it's time for the good news.

one of the fantastic things to come out of the past week is my relationship with Jackie's family. before friday night, her sister didn't want to know about me at all. she was frosty to day the least. but in the past week, I seem to have become a member of the family. she greets me with a hug and a kiss every time we go around there, she thanked me for helping and being so supportive over the past week and she's asked me to make sure jackie is all right.

it's been wonderful. given the complete lack of relationship i had with the ex's family and friends, how ostracised and alone I felt, it's almost a dream how much I have been accepted by Jackie's friends and family. given that I am her first girlfriend, especially.

I think the fact that I love her and I show it helps. I know I'm also likable and of course the past week has sped up what might have been a long, slow natural process. but it means the world to me, it makes me so happy that Jackie doesn't have to feel pulled between her family and me, and for my own sanity, to know that these people like me, accept me and respect my relationship with the girl that we all love is incredibly special.

and then the topping to it all - yesterday they invited me to go to tenerife with them over christmas. they leave on friday and are gone for two weeks. both jackie and I were speechless. and this morning, they had even investigate prices and the sister offered to book the flight.

and who am I to turn down a cheap trip to sunshine and relaxation while it's cold and miserable here? so I said yes and she booked the ticket and now I'm going to tenerife. on friday. needless to say, I am stunned, shocked and more than a little excited.

now I just have to hope work is okay with me taking the extra time off.

Posted by rachie at 04:18 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

detailing

So, I'm a little bit more together now. plus I'm on cable, so it's good stuff - a fast internet connection is a good thing.

anyway, we're coping. the girl is up and down. the brother-in-law is taking it hard - he could be suspended from his job if this goes to trial. if they are found guilty it could mean a jail sentence.

they won't be found guilty. there are too many witnesses who saw that they did nothing. they were provoked by words and deeds. it was incredible.

following are my recollections of the night. i've written these down to give to the solicitor when the time comes.

The first I knew that there was a problem was people crowding around the bathroom door and R telling me to stay where I was. I had no idea what was going on but then the barmaid and pub landlord came through and told us to leave. I picked up my stuff and went outside. Outside there were people sitting on the picnic tables in front of the pub. I talked to The nephew and Jackie about who was going to take Sister home and whether we were all going to go and get a curry or not. It was about then that the police turned up. There were about 8-10 of them in a van. Several people had thought that Sister and Brother-in-law had alrethe nephew gone but then someone said they were down by the wall next to a tree, talking.

R said to me that we had better go because the police wouldn't go until we had gone. I remember realizing she was right and repeating what she had said to Jackie. I looked at the police and remember thinking that the female policewomen looked vaguely amused. I tried smiling at one of the male cops as I went past but he didn't smile back.

We went down to the bottom of the parking lot and Jackie went to see Sister and Brother-in-law. After a little while, R told her that we had to go as Brother-in-law and Sister couldn't decide who was doing what the rest of us had decided to go for a curry and they were trying to decide who would go home with Sister. R told Jackie she'd done what she could and we needed to go as R was getting worried about the attitude of the police. At that point I retreated to the bottom of the parking lot and stood against a tree as I didn't want to get involved in any family discussions as I didn't feel it was my place to tell people what they should do.

I remember seeing Jackie go back to where Brother-in-law and Sister were when one or two policemen went down there. R was saying oh no, oh no. There were no raised voices and no-one raised a hand but the next thing I saw was one of the police grab Jackie and put her hands behind her back. I am not sure where The nephew was at this point. I started to get very upset as I saw the police push Jackie up towards the van and pushed her head down to put her in the van. R and M stopped me from going up.

I remember someone saying "they're hitting Brother-in-law" or "they're beating Brother-in-law" I can't remember the exact wording. I looked around and Brother-in-law was on the ground with his arms behind his back there were at least three cops around him. I think they were trying to pick him up and take him to the van. I think the tall cop in the grey jacket was bending down saying something to Brother-in-law.

Things from here are a little blurry. I remember someone saying they were arresting C at some point and seeing her being taken to the van. I remember Sister calling 999 on her cell phone and handing the phone to me saying I'm calling the police and me saying but they are the police, calling them isn't going to do anything.

Someone answered and I handed the phone back to Sister. She told them that the police were beating people. She gave the phone to M. R was on the floor screaming. I remember seeing Brother-in-law up against the side of the van.

Then I remember R and Sister and I going up to a young policeman. I yelled at him and told him that all this was their fault, that we'd been fine and there was no trouble until they'd come along and caused trouble. He told me that we needed to leave now or I'd be arrested too. That they were being taken to the police station. I asked where and he said at the one 100 metres along the road. I said fine and took Sister's hand and said we're going we're going to the police station down the road and wait for them there. We walked out of the parking lot and down the road. We passed two young guys at the bus stop who asked what was going on. We said, just don't ask. We were passed by two more police vans between the police station and The Mustard Pot.

When we got to the police station, we went in and rang the bell. Sister said she would like to lay a complaint against the police officers. The man at the desk was extremely patronizing and said "Oh, is that right." Sister went on to tell what had happened but he just nodded and continued to be patronizing.

At that point M, S and R turned up. We went outside and M & S continued to talk to them. Sister decided she needed to go home and get changed so we left and went back to hers. R called me there and said that she and Chris were coming down.

We called the police station several times after M arrived. They told us variously that they were sleeping, they were intoxicated and that they couldn't tell us what was going on. We asked for messages to be passed along for them to call Sister's when they were released. At about 6am Chris and I went to the Police Station. At that point we were told by the lthe nephew on the desk that the custody sergeant said that they were all still well intoxicated and they couldn't be questioned until completely sober. She told us they were being breathalysed on a regular basis and they were all still well drunk and they wouldn't get out until at least lunch time.

Later on when R called she was told that only one of them had asked for a solicitor although they wouldn't say which one. By this point they wouldn't tell us anything about them, what was happening to them or when they would be likely to be getting out. They would not tell us how long they could hold them without charging them. R called a solicitor who was going down because The nephew had requested a duty solicitor. She asked them to check on Jackie and C.

so that's what I remember. there's so much more that I've been told, things that the cops said to jackie and the brother-in-law, things that were said to others, the fact that jackie asked for a solicitor for hours and they wouldn't organise one for her and they wouldn't let c call her husband.

It's all so much to take in. it's hard to wrap your head around what's happened. I'm mostly worried about jackie at this point and her family. I know all she wants is for it to go away. I wish it would too. but it's not going to, is it? it's happened and we have to deal with it. have to learn and move on and take strength from the fact that we can get through this. and some good things have certainly come from it. those are to come in another entry.


Posted by rachie at 04:00 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

décembre 01, 2003

my life is never boring

I don't really have a whole lot of energy to write this, so I'm going to try and keep it brief for now. I'll post the details later but right now I'm still pretty much in shock and trying to get my head around it all.

there are moments in life where things you thought you knew are turned on their head. This weekend was one of those moments. On Friday night after my girl's birthday which I ended up going to after all. After she and her family were victimised and her brother-in-law and her nephew brutally assaulted. by police who are supposed to be there to protect people like us. after my girl spent her birthday in a police cell when she'd done absolutely nothing wrong...

after all this I find myself feeling physically ill when I see a police car or see anyone in a uniform that even looks vaguely like a police uniform. and that is just wrong.

I have never witnessed anything like that. I have never physically seen a human being treat another like the police treated my friends on Friday night. Police who are supposed to be there to protect us. To stop fights, not start them.

I am so angry. I am beyond angry. And there will be complaints. from me and the other 15 or 20 witnesses that saw exactly what happened. I swear I won't be happy until every single police officer in that first van is hauled in front of a disciplinary hearing and hopefully lose their jobs.

however, if there is one thing that I know now, it's how much I love my girl. if I hadn't been held back as I saw her being dragged away I would have been in the cell next to her. I love her so much. every single minute she was in there and I didn't know what was happening to her was sheer hell. absolute hell.

it took something like that to bring home to me how much she means to me. The fear of being hurt melted away when I saw her being manhandled into that van. All I wanted was to have her back in my arms and to kiss her and hold her and tell her how much I love her and how much I need her. and as the hours wore on and I tried to keep it together and started to fear that she'd be kept in all over my birthday too, all I wanted, all I could think about was getting her out of there. and they wouldn't tell us anything and I felt so frustrated and helpless and angry. furious.

like I said, when I have my head around this more, I'll go into more detail. right now, just so any friends who I should have emailed back and haven't know why, this is the bare bones. I'm okay now, she's okay and I am so grateful to have her back. I'm so grateful to have her full stop.

I just love her.

Posted by rachie at 05:15 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack