Midi: Leaving On A Jetplane
Shirley's World Of Favorite Midi Music

1970 - In May, 1970 we left Detroit, Michigan and headed down to Toledo, Ohio. Holy Toledo! here we come. It was late May, when we arrived there.

We stayed in a tent on a campground until I found us a place to live. It took me a couple of weeks to find an apartment. The drinking and abuse was getting worse.

1970 - After a few months there, we met two teenage girls, that were visiting their aunt next door. Their mother was a drunk and had kicked them out. She was worried the girls would take her new husband away from her.

The oldest girl Sandy, (16) came to live with us and her sister, Cathy stayed with her aunt. I became Sandy's foster mother soon after. I was only 23 myself at the time.

One day I heard André telling Sandy's uncle the story on how he got robbed in Detroit. It was not the same story I heard. He told him he paid $50.00 for a black prostitute and on their way to her apartment, a black guy jumped him and took his billfold.

1970 - On most weekends, Sandy and I would take the kids to the drive-in theatre or window shopping if we had no money, to get away from my husband. He was getting drunk every weekends and I couldn't stand getting abused by him anymore. Sometimes, we would just sit in the car somewhere and wait until he was passed out before we went home. One day, he didn't want us to leave with "his car" so he laid on the hood of the car and was holding on to the windshield wipers, so I gave him a ride in the alley. Today I think it's funny, but not back then.

1971 - In the spring of 1971, we moved to a big house in another part of town.

Shorthly after we moved, I received a phone call from my family, telling me that my 19 yr old sister, Diane had died in a big hotel fire. Two of my brothers were firemen on call that night and one of them found her body. I don't even think they knew that she was at the hotel that evening. Our little girl Chantal and I took a plane to Québec for the funerals, leaving our son Jacques with André and Sandy.

We had the tent set up in the back yard and one of André's homosexual friend would sleep there almost every night. I woke up around 4:00 AM one morning and Andre was not in the house, so I went outside to look for him. I started to unzip the tent and someone was holding the zipper down so I couldn't get in. He finally came out a few minutes later and told me he was having a beer with Joe.

1971 - One evening, I was not feeling good, so I took a nap, I woke up and heard my little girl saying "Daddy why you playing with Sandy's boo...". I got up and seen my husband with Sandy on the sofa kissing, with his hand inside her blouse, in front of our 5 yr. old little girl. I moved out of our bedroom, and never had anything else to do with him again.

Sandy moved in with an old lady next door. I had no place else to go, so the kids and I stayed there for a while. André also moved next door. I think I lived in Toledo with him for a year and a half.

In late summer I became involved with another French Canadian. He seemed so "nice". His name was Gaston Lachance. He worked with my ex, and drank with my ex.

1971 - In October 1971, after getting an eviction notice, the kids and I moved to Port-Clinton, Ohio with Gaston. He was such a nice guy, I was sure he was the man of my dreams. He even told me once that I should put André in jail for beating me up, that he did not believe in a man hitting a woman. I felt so happy to find a man that doesn't believe in hitting women or kids.

1972 - Gaston got laid off from his electrical lineman job, so he decided to go back to Québec so he could get his carpenter's license.(He was a carpenter before moving to the U.S).

We packed all we could fit in the cap of the pick-up truck , and off we went in the middle of the night. Oh boy what a trip. A case of beer in the back and a bottle of Black Velvet whiskey under the seat. He decided he was gonna be doing all the driving.

When we got to the Canadian border, we really got searched. We always kept 3-4 big bags of sand in the back, for weight in the winter time, and they sliced them all up with a knife to check inside of them, and they opened all of our luggages, what a mess.

He was getting drunker and drunker, and still refused to let me drive. He drove more than 900 miles without any problems, except for swerving a little, once in a while

When we got passed Québec City, the roads were all snow and ice. He missed a curve and thank god, there was a long driveway that went straight across our path. We finally came to a stop, 3 feet from a garage. Snow covered three fourth of our truck, and my door was the only one that would open. I had to get out and shovel us out of there. We made it the rest of the way with no problems.

1972- We stayed in Québec for a few months, until he got his carpenter's papers and came back to Toledo.