From jailbird to freebird. Yoohoo!

Monday, February 21, 2006
4 pm CST
County Criminal Court #9 (Republican Judge Analia Wilkerson), forgot to put her case on the docket which may have been a good thing after all b’cos the attorney managed to plea-bargain and got the charge reduced from a ‘Class B misdemeanor’ to a ‘Class C misdemeanor’. Class B was for possessing fake id – max. $4000 fine + max. 1 yr. in jail. But Class C is simply ‘not having a valid TX Driver’s License’ – max $500 fine.
So she pleaded guilty to Class C, paid a $50 fine plus $200 court costs and that’s it! Now she’s truly a freebird and on her way back to dear ol’ Seadrift.
Native American friend Wolf pitched in $100, Goldstar Families for Peace pitched in with a cheque of $150 (Ann Wright & I made up for it in cash.) Still no idea if I’ll get back the $1500 cash I put up for bail.
We, ie Diane, Ann Wright, Cindy’s sister Didi (adorable tiggerloly) and I were out of there by 10:45 am CST and on our way to Katie Heim’s place where we had a wonderful breakfast celebration with homemade biscuits, eggs, mashed potatoes and mimosas (champagne & orange juice)!
Later, over an Indian meal at my place, we hatched plans for supporting Diane in the future. Didi asked that I put together a quick proposal which we can use to garner support from the national envtl, peace and social justice community. I should have something ready in a couple of weeks. I would greatly appreciate ideas, inputs, contacts and support from anyone who can pitch in. For almost two decades she has fought a hard and lonely battle. It’s time to show her that she has friends who truly care.
P.S. I am signing off for a couple of days but just FYI, Diane’s off her phones and email. She wants a week or so to reboot and recuperate! She’s promised to check in with me once every couple of days so if there are any messages, I’ll be happy to pass them on to her.
Feb 18th ’06 Sat.
Yes, she’s out dear friends of Diane!
I apologise for not being able to send this out y’day. By the time we got back from Seadrift, it was late and we were exhausted.
Everything went smoothly. NOT as planned! But without any major hitches. She was out well before 9 am. She looked absolutely ecstatic and gorgeous in the DeLay fundraiser party clothes! (Pics attached). Very slim and trim after the 70 day Victoria Diet! We spent some time with her mother and a couple of members of her family before taking her out for her first real meal. Mexican of course! She wanted Margheritas too but of course, she had forgotten that it’s a dry town! Only beer & wine. (Nina S., Carolyn C, you might remember ‘El Comal’ where we plotted some of the actions on the day she broke her month long fast outside the Dow plant.)
She found it hard to believe that she was out. We took her for a ride by her (San Antonio) Bay, and the old purple house (being torn down, almost gone) where she used to live and the fishing house, which is no more. Spotted ‘Deputy Dawg’, Donna Sue’s husband’s boat. Headed back to her trailer. It was my first time there. We spent a couple of hours just talking and laughing ourselves silly. And discussing her plans to build a house. Finally! The minute she heard that the first royalty check was in the mail, she said she would start on the pilings tomorrow, right next to where the trailer is standing.
Man was I relieved to hear that!
That small trailer’s falling apart. It’s on its last legs. If it hadn’t been for the cold front, I wouldn’t have known that it’s not equipped with a heater. Didn’t get a chance to check drinking water, plumbing and other essentials but I bet there wasn’t much to check. I really wish we had not dipped into her royalty funds to pay that $2,000 fine. She so badly needs a house. I certainly hope we can raise enough funds to cover it.
Enroute to Houston, when I called her to pass on a message from a friend, she told me that she had spent the last 15 mts on the phone, being chewed up- down one way and then the other – by one of her oldest daughters. “Why can’t you stay at home and be a mother?” being the general tone of the discussion. Diane kept saying, “I don’t understand what she means. She’s all grown up, got two kids of her own, a husband, a great job, a house, everything! I was a mom for years and years and now they’re all grown up and gone. I don’t understand what she means – stay at home and be a mom now??!! For David, yes, but all the rest of them – they are adults!” I felt terrible about leaving her alone in that state. Just that morning she had been welcomed by her sister with – “Now, I hope you’ve learnt your lesson Diane!” I know she’s used to not getting much support from her family but that sure must’ve hurt. I tried reassuring as best as I could but I sure wish we hadn’t left her alone.
Rest of the drive back I kept thanking my good fortune for my wonderfully supportive family. In fact, if it had not been for my in-laws saying go do what you need to do when they were visiting in dec-jan, I couldn’t have done any of the support work I did for Diane.
Which reminds me, thank you all for writing me such wonderful emails this past week. I feel like a rockstar. Like I have to give an Oscar speech or something! Seriously!
Couldn’t have done anything if these friends had not shared my burden:
Ann Wright
Gary Cohen
Boann Perry & Jackie Lanum
Diana Claitor
Diana Ruiz
Aquene Freechild
Alice Blackmer, Margo Baldwin & John Barstow @ Chelsea Green
Katie Heim
David Graeve
Molly Bang
Ivette @ Greg Gladden’s office
Bryan Parras
Jodie, Nina, Nina R and all the Unreasonable Women.
Truly appreciate all your support. Thank you!
P.S. If pic attachments don’t come through let me know. I’ll send them to Chelsea Green, Code Pink and websites so everyone can view them.
(Attachments didn’t come through, but patience – Ed)

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