Stolen Moments, Robbed Memories
This picture is of me and my college roommate. It was taken at my grandfather's house in January 1989. He was going to be driving us back to school.
I was baking and she was clipping coupons when this photo was taken. Everything about our friendship was great up until this point. In our short stay at my grandfather's house, something unforgivable happened.
She'd stolen money out of my wallet, presumably when I was in the shower.
I wouldn't know until years later that she'd stolen money from my grandfather as well. He was single then, as my grandmother had passed on years earlier. I didn't know it at the time but he kept money in a dresser drawer. Each little stack representing a bill that needed to be paid and that's how he managed the bills without my grandmother.
I don't know how I made the discovery, noticing that my money was missing. Maybe I'd already had that feeling about her. All I knew is that it had been there. It was $40 folded and tucked into the change compartment of my wallet.
I was furious!
But this was my friend, and my new roommate. I was going to have to deal with it.
I stole it back
In the short term, while she was in the bathroom I carefully went through her things and found my folded $40 amongst her money which was not folded, and I took it back. I hid it very well so that she wouldn't find it again, if she even dared.
She had to of known after the folded $40 was gone, that I knew. I couldn't make a big deal out of it. I didn't want my grandfather to be mad at her. This was a problem I had to solve on my own.
Before my grandfather left us at school, he gave us each some money. He obviously didn't know yet that he had money missing at home and I hated that I knew she didn't need any money or deserve it.
The prior semester, she always had money for extra things, like for real shopping. Whereas my fun money budget was more like $10 a week that could buy me fast food, and some ice cream on the weekends.
There was a group of us that had bonded in the first semester. When we got back to school, I confided in one of the girls who then asked if I was sure. I couldn't doubt that it was my $40 that'd I'd taken back, but I started to feel bad about it. We had all fallen back into the fun we'd had before we parted ways before Christmas and I didn't want to ruin our clique. I just made sure to keep my money in a place she could never find it.
I can't remember what happened to prompt an "intervention", but we set up my roommate to easily find a $5 bill if she was snooping for it. I gave her some time in our room alone and sure enough the money was gone when I came back. I couldn't believe she dared to steal from me again. For all she knew that was all the money I had.
I was so furious with her that I screamed and hollered at her and cried as I do when I'm screaming mad. She'd apologized and begged me not to tell anyone but I figured that was the
best worst thing I could do to pay her back.
I immediately inquired from our RA if there was anyone else I could room with. There was one girl who was there on a basketball scholarship, but she was mean. Whatever her name was, we prefaced it with "Big". She was one of those big bully girls that you just stayed clear of.
Her room was always dark and she was always sleep. There were pay phones in the hallway and her room was closest to them. If someone called and called for you and she was the one to answer, you didn't want her to be the one pounding on your door saying, "TELEPHONE!" She'd wait for you to come get the phone so she could glare at you before slamming the door to her room.
No thanks. I couldn't live with her either. Her roommate hadn't come back from the first semester. I'm sure she was miserable.
Anyway, so I remember it was three us who went in for the intervention with my roommate. One of the other girls did the talking in such a mature and motherly way, trying to smooth things over.
I can see that moment in my memory as clear as day, but I don't remember anything about my roommate after that.
It's not uncommon for me to completely block an unhappy memory.
This was a Share a Photo/Tell the Story Friday post. It's the Week 4 old school blogging prompt for the Finish the Sentence Friday writing community where I'm co-hosting with Kristi Campbell of Finding Ninee.
Join us for next week's FTSF prompt where we will finish the Sentence, "It's the end of the school year and........."