This letter was written by a person incarcerated in Susanville.
Well first, just imagine you are livin’ in your bathroom! Just erase the shower or bath! Because the toilet and sink is present in there! Two metal pieces, one bottom of the wall, one at the top. Now put a thin mat covered in plastic. That is your bed. The toilet is like two or three feet away from the head or foot of the bed. Depends on which way you sleep.
Now add a friend or not so friend! He is also livin’ in this bathroom with you! So you both are existin’ in this. Two grown men are confined in this little space. And the prison guards control the door. So you only come out when they allow you! Sometimes twice, sometimes three times, sometimes four, most times no more than five times throughout the whole day.
The most time you are out of your bathroom (AKA your cell) is three hours and 45 minutes. Most times, only for about two and a half hours. Sometimes two hours and 45 minutes. Sometimes you never come out of your cell for a whole day!
For the most part, bein’ in a cell is better to me than bein’ in an open dorm. Because you get to be alone and able to not be bothered by a lot of people. Because most thoughts are in prison of the mind. Or negative or lies, so I like bein’ able to be alone sometimes, because it gives you privacy to think and not be bothered!
But on Father’s Day 2020 was when the first COVID case, one or two, on the yard. In building three, they locked this yard down for 14 days and tested everyone; the prisoners and guards and free staff. They put this Q-tip, it feels too far up your nose. Then they put it in a small tube with liquid in it. Then you just sit in your cell with your celly until you get your results back!
It could take two, three, four, sometimes five days. Then they just tell you, well when the COVID cases in here first started, they would just take the one who had a positive test out the cell and move them to one buildin’. Buildin’ three and they would leave the other one left.