Murphy stumbled, fell and landed face down on the pavement. He just lay there for a few moments, while passers by stepped over him or changed course to avoid him completely. Which ever action they took it was obvious no one saw the man in dirty rags lying at their feet as a person worth their time or effort. Eventually Murphy rolled over on his back to look up at the sky before getting up and starting down the street again.
A half an hour later he arrived at the familiar oak door and knocked loudly. Soon he heard the clamor of heeled shoes coming toward him as they walked down the long tiled hall within. The door creaked open and the head of Father Ryan appeared.
“Ah, Murphy.” Father Ryan said as he looked Murphy over and opened the door further.“Come inside, I’ll get you some food and we can talk.” Murphy nodded and entered the building.
“Have you decided?” Father Ryan asked quizzically as they walked to his office. Murphy nodded again, and then his head hung low between his shoulders.
“Alright it’s settled then. Sister Alice already has a bed ready for you. I’ll start the paperwork. Once you sign and agree that you’re committed to the program, you can attend the Drug Assisted Detox workshop and start the process as early as tomorrow morning. Doctor Phillips runs a clinic out of one of the offices here at the mission. Last door on the right hand side is where you’ll find him. Take this paper and bring it to him. He will be responsible for adjusting your dosage and administering your medication. Be at the pharmacy every morning at 8:00am. If you miss two sessions, he will drop you from the program. Do you understand?”
Murphy looked into the eyes of Father Ryan and with great sincerity replied “Yes Sir”. At least that’s what Father Ryan thought he heard; it was impossible to be sure the way the syllables had slurred together. But he took it as a good sign, smiled and slapped Murphy on the back by way of encouragement. “Good Luck Son.”