Tag: Last Stop Recovery House

Paul and Anthony

Paul_and_Anthony 001Paul (left) and Anthony (right), in the courtyard at The Last Stop Recovery House, 2013.

Edited Audio Transcript

I was thinking I coulda got a good picture of this when it first happened.

That’s your trophy.

It’s God’s way of sayin’ look at your arm, you ever think you can do that again look down at your arm?

Jeffrey Stockbridge:
Say that again for me.

It’s God’s way of telling me if I, if I think I can do these drugs again, shoot Herion in my arm, its like, he gives me a little sign, like look down at your arm you idiot.

That’s like me with these tattoos. When I got sober, I put them on my arms so if I ever decide to get it in again, my children, I’d have to look them in the eye before I actually brought it up to my face. I got them right after I stopped drinking in 05.

That’s awesome.

Can I photograph your arms?

Yeah, na. Hello? Mike, you’re gonna loose the call but I’ll call you back when I get out to the car all right? All right man, bye.

You wanna shoot, you wanna take a shot? I don’t mind.

Yeah, yeah, I think that’s really powerful what you just said.

That’s the truth.

Can you tell me a little about what it’s been like for you to be a sponsor?

I’ll tell you this much, um, 2 weeks before New Years, uh I had eight guys, I had two women in the process and um, in a very short time, all of them fell to the wayside. I’ve got one sponsee left here in Philly, and I got one sponsee left in New Jersey, both male, uh, don’t know what happened to the females, I don’t know what happened to the other men. They took their will back. It’s a pretty powerful disease. It can come at you any time through many things, a hundred forms of fear. If I remain in the moment I can help anybody, but if I don’t I can’t even help myself. Um, if I remain conscience of my higher power throughout the day and when I become uh, self-conscience of my own will returning, it removes these things from me. Uh, when I do that I become responsible. I become aware of the sickness, the demonic things that are uh, at work, the unseen war that has been revealed to me through this process, for I was unaware of these things prior and uh, its madness out here, it’s a lawless game. I have a mental defense provided to me from Christ. Without that I am nothing. I help no matter who is put in my path. For that I am grateful. I stay focussed. My mind and my soul, they’ve become centered. Uh, that’s all I really got. I’m Paul and I’m an addict.

Beautiful day out.

Yes, it’s so nice isn’t it.

It’s fucking great man. Days like today make me happy.

I was glad I came down here this morning. I had no purpose this morning when I woke up. No, no nothing really to do. Something said go to The Stop, somebody always needs help over there. And uh…

You gave me some hope today man.

Came through, met some people, not even by like choice, just came through and it starts with a cup of coffee. You know, 50 cent. Best show in the world. The last stop man. That’s no shit. Hahahaha.

This place is like… This place is better than Club Med man, for real for real. Hahahaha. You know there’s certain demons I’m still dealing with like cigarettes and coffee but the greatest thing I ever achieved from this goal, cause like I’ve had sober time before and was, I was still lost and pray on helpless women and this is the longest I’ve been without hurting anybody and uh that’s great, that’s great man, not even hurting myself or hurting anybody else, that’s the best feeling in the world. You know, not worrying about money, not worrying about my next meal, everything’s been provide like they promised, you know, all I had to do was be willing cause I can tell you for the first 6 months, 8 months of my recovery I hated my sponsor cause he always told me the fucking truth and every time the phone rang and I seen it was his number man and I’d get all pissed off cause I don’t wanna here what he’s got to say cause it’s gonna make me look at my shit, and then, I started changing something, it just started happening and I ran with it, like uh, like I tried to tell you earlier, just ran with it and um my mind started to change and then my body started to change like they said it would. Cause I couldn’t do nothing on my own man. My best thinking got me a hot cup of coffee and a seat in an AA meeting. You know what I mean.

Paul 001Paul, The Last Stop Recovery House, 2013.

This my babies. Carly’s the oldest, Buckey’s the youngest, I got him first.

And look up at me. (Click) Got it.



Thanks man.

That was a really good story. I appreciate you taking the time.

Well, I always said the worst story I ever heard was my own cause I lived that shit. Truth.

How long have you been clean?

Long enough. All I really got is the moment. That’s what we all got. I can’t change five minuets ago and I don’t know what the hell is gonna happen, so I ripped the rearview out of my car, just steady moving forward man cause you can either move forward or you’re stopped. And when you stop in life, you’re just existing man, no purpose, that’s the loneliest feeling I ever felt. Just praying on others like my sponsor told me man it was like, I was a caterpillar, and he said, what does a caterpillar do and I said you know, it basically just eats all day, he said yeah it takes life, takes plants that make oxygen, just a taker of life and then he said, then you go into a cocoon which is like the 12 steps and um what happens in the cocoon? He said you become liquefied and Christ builds you back up into this beautiful butterfly and then you’re a giver of life just going around pollinating and making more trees and shit and I was like man I could, I could, that has depth and weight, I can believe that at first you know what I mean. So I just ran with that. Simple things like you know. You say in every one of us there’s a white wolf and a black wolf and uh whatever one I feed that day is gonna get stronger and what happens when you’re feeding one and not the other, the other will diminish, so it can no longer go against the one, it can’t even fight it has no energy, no strength. So if I’m constantly feeding the white wolf, and sometimes you feed the black one you know, but if you’re feeding it more white than the black, white’s gonna get stronger and stronger and stronger and the black never fully goes away but he has no attack. Cannot harm you anymore. I was like, that’s awesome! And that’s an old Cherokee teaching you know, and like he (Paul’s Sponsor) would paint pictures like that for me and like um, one of my favorites was like, I’m in a hole when I first came around in 05, uh, I’m in a hole and I can’t get out and I can’t see, I can see the top lip but I can’t reach it and you get all these people throwing you rope. So what you do, you grab the rope and you start pulling yourself up. But your human strength can’t, isn’t suffice, and they let go of the rope and you’re back in the hole again. And he said well, I’m here to tell you I’m getting down in the hole wit ya, I’m a get you out first, and then I’ll worry about myself. I was like, that’s awesome. Yup, I’ve been with him since man, he led me to the promised land.

I gotta charge my phone bro. Nice meeting you.

Nice to meet you too.

Good luck with everything. I’ll be talking to you.


131031- 002Valerie, The Last Stop Recovery House, 2013.


131030- 011Cici, 2013.


131030- 009Scott sits in his room at the Last Stop Recovery House on Kensington Avenue, 2013.

Audio Recording took place during dinner at Cast Your Cares down the block.

Audio Transcript

Scott: I’m staying at the last stop, um, I came out from California. I just came out here, I was born and raised here, but uh, I came out here about seven months ago, and got wrapped up on the streets out here. I came out here on a freight train. But yeah, I got wrapped up down here and didn’t wanna jump the train in the wintertime.

Volunteer: Would anyone…excuse me; would anybody like one?

Scott: Yes, thank you, appreciate it.

JS: Thank you.

Scott: Thank you very much.

Volunteer: You’re very welcome.

Scott: And uh, I’m the cook there at the Last Stop actually, I’m the guy who’s got the Irish flag hanging out the window, have you seen that?

JS: Yeah.

Scott: Yeah, that’s me, that’s my window.

JS: Awesome.

Scott: It was the legal system I was leaving behind, and um…

JS: What do you mean?

Scott: Like, uh, I was getting in trouble for drugs, to support the drug habit, here in Philadelphia. And I’m thirty-eight years old; this was when I was in my early twenties. So I left and went down to Florida and um, the crimes I had would’ve gotten me in trouble here, but they weren’t extraditable offenses, so they wouldn’t extradite me back here, so it was basically ‘stay out of Philadelphia’. And then, um, 911 hit…in Florida, everything’s flown in in Florida, so I left Florida and started just drifting. I had a really good time doing it.

Volunteer: Would you like another sticky bun?

Scott: Uh, no thanks.

Volunteer: You sure?

Scott: Yeah, I’ll take one, okay.

Volunteer: I got one with nuts…

Scott: Yeah, that one’s good.

Volunteer: Here, have one with raisins…

Scott: Alright.

Volunteer: …And this one has raisins and nuts.

Scott: Okay, we’ll take em to the kids.

[To JS]: But yeah, you would love taking pictures of the, of the freight trains. You see some beautiful things.

JS: Yeah?

Scott: Through the cascades, from Roseville to uh, to Klamath Falls, from Klamath all the way up to Seattle, Arizona… beautiful places in America. People don’t get to see them; the only thing that runs down these lines are freight trains, you know, so only the guys driving the train. Usually there’s a road that follows the train, but not everywhere, especially in the national forests, when it cuts through there. The only up there on them mountains is freight trains and animals.

JS: So how did you find the Last Stop?

Scott: Actually, I heard about it in California.

JS: Really?

Scott: Uh huh. A friend of mine was out here, and uh, he got in a jam out here, same thing, got wrapped up with drugs, and went to the Last Stop, and then, um, he only stayed there for a small time, and then he went back to California, but he told me about it. Cause I was born and raised over here, uh, Frankford and Tioga, so, so it worked out. I got…went to the Last…The Last Stop saved me. Y’know? I’ve been there, like, fifty-nine days, and there’s only like four people from when I walked in through the door. Most of them couldn’t make it, y’know? A lot of them left on good terms, don’t get me wrong, but um, y’know, look at the neighborhood: you got drugs right out front there, you know what I mean? I mean, it’s not for the people who uh, need it, it’s for the people who want it. But Eddie always tries with almost everybody. He’ll give anybody a chance. In fact I think the harder the case is the more he likes to try to help them. Y’know, the people that nobody else wants? He wants those people.

Nobody wanted me! I went to Cooper hospital, OD’d, they said I was, because I’d stopped breathing, I was thirty seconds away from brain damage and minutes away from death. And as soon as I started breathing, they gave me a meal and told me to have a good day, get out. And I was like ‘man, I almost died! You were just telling me I almost died!’. Eddie took me with nothing, no ID, no nothing. Then I got my own room, y’know what I mean, and I’m good. I haven’t used drugs or alcohol in uh, fifty-nine days. Yknow, and alls he asks you to do is help out, just don’t sit around and take it for a free ride. He doesn’t ask you for any money, if you can give, you give; if you can’t, at least get up off your behind and try to pitch in and help out. A lot of guys come in and help out that have a lot of time, clean and sober, like, guys that have been in my position and are now, y’know, living, uh, life. And um, they come and give back. The guys who live there, with less days, I mean there’s only about four or five of those guys who really help out, like regularly, there every day. And then we got guys that are there that are kicking dope, you know, they’re withdrawing from Heroin, and uh, they’re…some of them don’t know, you know, some of those people never had a job, or if they do, they’ve always been told what to do; to move on their own initiative is uh, is very hard for them. And um, some of them are depressed because of what’s happened, uh, their situation or their family or whatever, y’know what I mean? And some of them are suffering from different types of mental problems, y’know? He doesn’t just take drug addicts and alcoholics; he’ll take anybody if they, if they have a desire to do something with themselves, y’know. He used to go up and down the Ave at night and look for addicts, to bring em in here, to comb the avenue…

%d bloggers like this: