I’ll never forget the day I got that phone-call from my drug dealer’s girlfriend. She said, “Joe got arrested, can you help me to get him bailed out?”.
This is what you would call a golden opportunity as an addict. Now, I had no real money to my name, I had just started working as a roofer and that daily labor wage was already spoken for by my drug of choice. However, the bail-bondsmen had agreed to take my car title as collateral, and he even went a step further in saying that my dealer could get out and would have two weeks to find alternative payment for the bond, and I would be totally in the clear regardless of what he did afterwards.
I was going to be the hero, for my heroin dealer. I was with his girlfriend when he was released from the county jail, I picked him up and he knew that I had put my car on the line to get him out when nobody else would. I instantly cashed in some of that favor in the form of heroin, he made a quick call and got me my daily supply, on the house.
While I was driving him to the motel he was going to stay at that night, I couldn’t help but overhear him talking to his sister on the phone. I heard him say, “no, I told you where it was, oh you gotta be kidding, don’t worry about it I’ll go in a few days and get it myself.”
My little addict brain started plugging in the missing pieces of the conversation. I quickly remembered that his arrest was centered around the charge of selling to someone that got busted, not that they had caught him with any volume of drugs. His stash wasn’t found.
I dropped him and his girlfriend off, and made a mad-dash to the hotel that I knew he was staying at when he was arrested. It was the Marriott, by Island 16 movie theater. It had four floors, and I know that, because I started at the bottom floor, and worked my way up.
I jumped up and pushed every ceiling tile in that hotel, until I got to the middle of the 4th floor. When I hit that one tile, I could feel something on top of it, a weight. I reached up and grabbed a walmart bag full of heroin and oxycontin. When I say full, I mean full. All told it was over 400 bags of heroin and 60 pills. I don’t say this to brag, but only to set up what happened next.
I stuffed the bag into my pants and ran to my car. I got in, got high, and called my best friend. My heart was racing, I couldn’t believe the score I just made. I pulled out of the parking lot onto the service road, and was immediately pulled over. This was it, I knew it. The cops had been watching the hotel, waiting for someone to come back for the stash, and I fell into the trap.
The officer stepped up to my rolled down window, and said the words I’ll never forget, he said “your back license plate light is out, just a warning but go get that fixed, have a good night.”.
How long would I have done in jail if that vehicle was searched? I only know that what I considered a miracle, was really God’s grace, just another attempt to get my attention. More grace that I would continue to abuse.