Enjoy the second part of Runaway Girl! (Read part 1 here)
It was only five o’clock in the morning when I tiptoed down the stairs and out the back door of the house. I took one last look at the family photo on the living room table and then I left. I was going to miss this house, but not my mom and dad or Samir. They could surely live without me.
At six thirty in the morning I boarded the plane to Italy. When I arrived in Italy, it was already one in the afternoon. I had an hour before my next flight to New York so I took a bathroom break and then read a few pages of my Koran. At two I got on the plane to New York. I could already feel the freedom in my veins as the plane landed seven hours later.
I had a friend in New York named Priya whom I had called before leaving Bangladesh. She had done the same thing I was doing three years ago. She now had one child and an amazing husband whom she married of her own free will. I hope I’ll be as lucky as she. She lives in Belmont, Long Island and offered to pick me up from LaGuardia Airport that evening. I called her from a payphone using the only U.S. quarter I had ever seen in my life. I took it from my dad’s collection. He collected coins from all over the world. Thankfully he had a U.S. quarter.
I put the quarter in the payphone and picked up the receiver only to find that there was no dial tone. I looked at the payphone trying to figure out what I had done wrong. On the top left hand side of the payphone I saw that it said ‘50¢’. That meant two quarters. I only had one. I sighed and began to walk away from the payphone when a blue eyed, dark brown haired guy in a business suit came up to me and handed me a quarter.
“You don’t have to thank me. I saw you from over there”, he said while pointing across the room. “You looked like you needed another quarter. You’re welcome,” he said smiling at me.
“Thank you,” I said. He left me standing at the payphone still in awe. He walked over to a man holding a sign that said ‘Broomfield’. I guess that was his driver.
I snapped out of it and called Priya. She told me she was already on her way, so I waited outside. I watched as other people pushed carts with suitcases to their taxis and riding away off to freedom. I couldn’t wait until Priya arrived. Finally she did, and I rode off into the freedom-filled sunset myself.
Priya’s husband, Greg, is very nice to me. Her daughter Vonetta is two years old, and she told me that she likes my Saris. Priya and I agreed that I should babysit Vonetta until I find a job in New York. Greg offered to pay me but I told him it wasn’t necessary. I already owed him for allowing me to remain in his home until I could stand on my own.