J is for Jailed

I have one little quirky trait. Well at least one that I will admit to.

I am fascinated with jails… always have been. I blame my father.

He was a politician and a new jail had opened up in our town. Being who he was, he was required to go cut the ribbon (or maybe the wire) to announce its new opening. I guess small town Canada is desperate to celebrate anything.

Yay! We have criminals and now we have a finer place to put them. Check out these cells!

My eyes were wide open. I took it all in and from there it began.. the fascination that is… not the time spent.

Having visited jails in Canada and one in South Africa (admittedly a bit scary but a job requirement to determine voter eligibility for its first non-racial democratic election), my all-time favourite jail experience was visiting Alcatraz off the coast of San Francisco.

Standing forlornly out in the water on an island, it felt eerie, unlike any place I have been. I couldn’t get my head wrapped around what it would have been like. Until I discovered…

There was actually a former prisoner signing autographs of his book right there in Alcatraz.

Rushing to the cue, I stand in awe. Like some teen obsessed with fan fiction, I wait to buy the book, get it autographed and then ask a question or two.

Finally I am there. I am standing in front of him. And this mouth, that usually works in overdrive, completely rebels.

I ask nothing. I am a star struck (well convict struck) loser.

Shyly moving away from the table, I grab the book and proceed to gobble it up; word by word.

On a more serious note, I am drawn to books about people wrongly convicted of crimes (David Milgaard) and how the justice system can fail. On a lighter (?) note, viewing Wentworth and Shawshank Redemption replaces my desire to visit jails; which occurs less and less. Probably a good thing.

Staying out of trouble with Cheryl and The Family C from A to Z.

Do you have a favourite book and/or movie that is set in a jail?



  1. roamingpursuits · April 13, 2015

    Fascinating. I have a post related to this that you may like – Old Melbourne Gaol.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. stephen tremp · April 12, 2015

    I’ve never seen a jail in real life. Only on TV and movies. I couldn’t imagine being behind locked bars. I try not to imagine what kind of people would be there with me.

    Stephen Tremp
    an A-Z Cohost
    @StephenTremp on Twitter

    Liked by 1 person

    • lovetotrav · April 12, 2015

      I agree. I wouldn’t want to be in one ever. Terrifying. Thanks for dropping by. Cheryl


  3. joannesisco · April 11, 2015

    I have a fear-based fascination with jails & prisons. I too have visited a number of them including Alcatraz. They’ve been quite an eye-opener!

    Liked by 1 person

    • lovetotrav · April 11, 2015

      I would say that is mine as well, fear- based. No desire to stay in one for real, ever. Maybe I find them fascinating because they are so scary and I wonder how people truly “survive” the experience of them.


  4. Dee · April 11, 2015

    You have an interesting fascination! I don’t think I know anyone else who likes jails! I do like Prison Break and Shawshank Redemption, though.

    Jakarta & Bandung, Indonesia [AtoZchallenge]

    Liked by 1 person

  5. herheadache · April 11, 2015

    Seeing Alcatraz is on my bucket list.
    I just recently went on a tour of the “haunted” jail in Ottawa. It was a sobering experience.
    Great J entry.I am claustrophobic and the idea of being locked up in such a tiny space is terrifying to me.

    Liked by 1 person

    • lovetotrav · April 11, 2015

      The haunted jail in Ottawa? I didn’t know such a thing existed. Will have to look into it.


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