Monday, April 30, 2012

My visit with my son: Getting there & signing in

One of the guard towers that watched
over us

Last Monday was my sign-in day to have the FRP (Family Reunion Program) visit with my son, but to our surprise, when we got up that morning and watched it turn daylight, this is what we saw:
Wet snow icing the trees...

Limited visibility 

Torture on the green leaves!

Heavy snow weighing pine branches down

And more snow fell...

We received about 3 to 4 inches total by the time
the storm passed.
However, in watching the traffic pass on the highway (which we can see from my house), traffic was moving right along, which meant that the roads had been kept clear. Good! We loaded the car and off we went on the trip to the prison. Although the roads weren't bad overall...we did encounter a spot or two on the highway that was a bit ify:
snow still coming down hard enough that visibility wasn't
all that good was trying to really come down and blow at the
same time
We made it to the prison safely, only seeing one minor skid-off on the way. It was surprising though that the storm had barely even dumped snow upstate. There might have been a tad more than a dusting on the ground.

With my dufflebag and groceries carried into the prison, it was now time to wait, I was roughly 45 minutes early and the guards don't start processing us through until 10:00 a.m. When all three of the FRP visits (there are three units as I described in my last blog) had arrived, then eventually a C.O. (Corrections Officer) came out and started going through all the luggage and grocery bags, checking for anything 'not allowed'. 

To anyone unfamiliar with prison rules, there is a lot that is forbidden. This is only a partial list of what is allowed or not allowed: 

(c) Visitors are allowed to bring only a minimum amount of personal property, including items of personal hygiene. The facility shall provide: pillows, blankets, bed linens, towels, soap and condoms[, sanitary pads and tampons (female facilities only)].(1) General. Glass containers are prohibited. Except for fresh fruits and vegetables, [meats and prepared foods,] food products must be commercially packaged in airtight hermetically sealed containers impervious to external influence….(g) Visitors may not bring in any alcohol, narcotics, dangerous drugs, [or] weapons cellular phones, wireless phones, pagers, laptop computers, personal digital assistants, any device with global positioning (G.P.S.) capabilities, any device with audio recording capabilities, radios, cameras or other similar electronic devices.
As well, there is a more inclusive list (pdf--pages 18 & 19), but it's still not all inclusive...and often, things change that won't be on the list: (I apologize for the fuzziness of the images...)

Since I have done this before, I hadn't brought anything that would not be allowed, I made sure that everything would pass inspection. That also included myself, as after the food and luggage were inspected, I then had to pass through the metal detector and did so with flying colors!

After another wait of about 20 minutes, we were loaded into a prison van, complete with all our items, and delivered to the appropriate unit...and inmate. 

Thus...began the visit.  Stay tuned for the next part....!


  1. I saw on your next post that you both had a nice time together.

    1. We had a wonderful time! Can't wait to do it again in 45-60 days!

  2. The pics of all the snow - CRAZY!!!! So glad we didn't get hit w/that crap! UGH! I hope to not see another snowflake for the rest of the year (I'd rather NEVER see one!)
    Glad all went well to get over to & into the prison.


    1. It did...snow wasn't going to stop us! Actually, by the time we left, it was tapering it was all good!