In my mind, the Cottage Grove apartments will always be synonymous with fear, violence and chaos. These were the years that I started school- this was my foundation. Mom was gone often, working and then she started drinking. She would have ridiculous parties at our apartment where once a drunken man stood before me and Jerry and proclaimed, “I am Superman,” upon which Jerry curtly responded, “I didn’t know Superman pissed his pants.”
One late evening we were awaken by someone yelling and loudly pounding on the door. Mom ran to the peephole and rapidly proceeded to secure the door with the extra locks and bolts. Jerry and I were terrified and kept asking, “Who is it, who is it?” Who was this crazy person screaming and pounding and pleading for mom to let him in? Jason remained asleep in his bedroom. Mom quickly had the sense to call the police and within minutes they arrived. Because such behavior was a common occurrence in the complex, I wouldn’t have been surprised if they just stationed a car permanently on its periphery. Upon their arrival, an ambulance was called as the man was barely alive having been stabbed a number of times. Mom recognized the guy from the complex, perhaps someone she partied with. Turns out it was a domestic dispute between some drunk Native and his lady. He was just trying to get away but it seems she got the best of him. Needless to say, we had a difficult time getting back to sleep that night.