Tuesday, December 14, 2010


------------- HUGS, TEARS, DREAMS and the FUTURE--------------

The nearest pub was only 2 blocks away, but as we walked in its direction, it seemed to take hours to get there. we were both emerced in our own private thoughts...........

Monday, July 26, 2010

A Life In The Day (60)

As it turned out on our last ride on our way to London, we rode in a (?) Lorry (?), a milk truck.
We didn't really know where we were, but BERNARD,( the truck driver) told us to look for a Hostel and go from there.
------------------------------MEDICAL ALERT !!!!!!!!!! -------------------------------


It now seems that I now have a prod from my Doctor to get with it and make daily entries!,

if I wish to get this done in my life autobiography !!! (pun intended !) Back soon , gotta
go for
my CAT SCAN now. Oops ,it gonna take a little longer then I thought. Gotta wait for Valium to kick in also for the M R I , . Apparently I have claustrophobia issues as well and can't lay still for a half hour with out freaking out, so I might be out for the rest of the day. I 'll be back a soon as I can for the rest of ENGLAND and the beginning of AFRIKA !!! yahoo!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! at 17 years of age and MONEY ! hahahaha and in 1964 !!

Hi folks, here's a brief catch-up. I'm afraid it seems that the prognosis is not a very good one. The Doctor just reiterated that if I were serious about my autobiography, I'd better hurry up with it!. What I have is an ugly thing ! So.....the rest of the narrative may be curt in some parts , BUT, it will ALL STILL BE TRUE. So, lets all jump back on the magic carpet, shall we? hahaha.


All morning long Joel and I spent the morning walking and looking for a Hostel or a Y.M.C.A.. yes I said Y.M.C.A.. hahaha , they had them there then. Well we found one and checked in then proceeded to check out the city. WOW! The ARCHITECTURE! THE Statuary, the history of what I'm sure the locals took for granted!
Also another surprise was that Joel apparently had NO problem with women that couldn't speak English when it came to sleep or have sex with, but when it came to one that spoke English? He was timid again! hahaha, (go figure?!). We found a place to grab a bit to eat and as we sat there, Joel spent His time looking at all around Him and I spent MY time looking at the girls! / grin.
I caught the eye of a Very PRETTY one who liked what She saw. Joel wanted to walk around and I said we'd meet at TRAFALGAR SQUARE in 2 hours. That's all it took for me to start hitting on Esmeralda,(her name). To get to the point, we hit it off, and hearing I was from America, she went nuts! When I told her where I was staying and for how long, she insisted that I come stay with her in her flat! ( let me think about it? OK!).
The British have an odd but practical way of paying for utilities. They have a little box, the size of a cable box on the our TV's, by the door. If you wanted 1 hour of electricity, you had to put a SHILLING into it, (about 1 US Dollar?), a pain in the ass, but in my case a pain in the toe. You see I broke it as Esmeralda and I were "BOINKIN", and the light went out, I got up to put a Shilling in it for more lights. Wrong thing to do in the dark, in a place you don't know! WHACK! CRACK! YEOW!
Having lived with a mother who broke 4 toes, I knew what to do . LIMP until they set!
During the days , Joel and I looked for GRAND CANADIAN LIFE ASSURANCE Ltd. , so we could cash in our policies and go on our ways.
We finally came across one off Battersea Park. After identifying ourselves and explaining what we wished to do with our policies,(to wit, cash them in and deposit them in an International Bank, such as BARKLEY ), which had offices ALL over the world! After paying a REALLY small cancellation fee,(about $125 !, remember, it was 1964 !), we got our money, deposited it in separate accounts,(at the same Banks, since it was Interglobal.) and then went to the nearest Pub to get drunk! hahahaha.


Sunday, June 6, 2010

A Life In The Day (59)

----------the ODYSSEY 0f OLD NAMED PUBS and LONDON --------
Williker and his friends came by about 2/3 hours later as Joel and I were eating " BANGERS, EGGS and CHIPS". I SWEAR TO Gawd! that's what they were / are called! Sausages, eggs and country fries! hahaha.
Anyway , seaman Williker and friends came in and sat at our table. They were happy for our departure from the sea to land and our up coming life's adventure.
As Joel and I sat there listening to all their advice, we were bolled over by all the things we were told to look out for and beware of. Things like never go into a whore house with all your money in one pocket! Watch out for gambling houses in London, especially if we win and leave!
And don't eat HAGGUS! ,( made from a sheep's stomach, filled with the sheep's intestines,heart and other organs of the poor beast!), unless we wished to make complete fools of ourselves, by vomiting all over others !! (it's an acquired taste! it's REALLY disgusting! ). hahaha.
How the girls in England were called "birds", and how they fell for American accents! ( OH BOY!). Not to flash money about! Be smart , but act dumb, and knowing that Joel and I spoke several languages, not to let on unless it was needed!
After 2/3 hours , the guys said they had to go back to the ship to ready for ship-out. We made our good buys, where upon they left and we were truly alone.
The sun was coming up. we had a couple of hours sleep and full bellies, so we decided to set out on the "Yellow Brick Road!"
Basically the distance from Liverpool to London, ( as the crow flies, is 190 miles. We weren't crows. It took us about 375/400 miles and 3/4 weeks to get there.).
One of the first things we found out was that when you hitch-hike, you don't point up with your thumb but down with you index finger down, (your pointing finger.). The next thing we found out was that things like Milk didn't come in square containers but in triangular ones! hahaha The next thing we realised were the funky names of the towns we went Thur! hahaha funky to us but real to them! Names like Edge Hill, Old Swan, Child Wall, Wave Tree, Gate Acre, Hunts Cross, Widnes, Runcorn, Stoke-on-Trent, NewCastle-Under-Lyme, Missed. I guess they were no stranger then Broken Knee, Purgatory, Last Chance, Dead Wood, Truth of Consequences, Big Whiskey. hahaha.
you haven't heard anything yet until you've heard the incredible, ludicrous, HYSTERICAL names of their Pub's
Joel and I made it a "MUST-DO" to stop in EVERYONE and have a drink, or as we found out , "A PINT OF BITTERS".AND SMOKE A "FAG", that's what they call cigarettes! hahaha
Some of the pub's we came across where ,The Black Spot, The Hand less Dipper, Drunken Goose, Maidens Key, Widow's Wail, The Weeping Eye, Mad Hatter, Headless Goose, Mum's Pantry, The Prancing Rock, The Broken Harp, The Drunken Friar, and so on, and so on.....
We had a field day going thru this new land! We were like 2 kids in "Willy Wonka's Chocolate Factory.", but it wasn't even close to what we encountered in LONDON!

Sunday, January 3, 2010

A Life In The Day (58)


The rest of the voyage went without many rough seas'. Joel and I were pretty much accepted by both crew and officers, mainly because we kept out of their ways and asked intelligent dumb questions. hahaha (oxymoron? ) . Joel was the darling of the ships personnel, due to His ability
to draw REALLY GREAT FUCKING PORTRAITS!, of both Officers and Crew!
As we passed the AZORES, we were told we were beyond the halfway point and to be ready to arrive in ENGLAND within a fortnight. First Port of call.........LIVERPOOL! THE BEATLES!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
The first sight of land we saw was the IRISH coastal port city of CARNSORE at the extreme S. E. corner of Ireland. It was beautiful after so many weeks at sea, and the cliffs! WOWSER! From there we were to sail into the channel and N.E. to the port of Liverpool where the BEATLES WERE BORN!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! remember this was 1964 !!!!!!!!!!!!!
Neither Joel or I had any baggage to speak of, so for the most part of entering the port and docking, was watched by us amidships.
Never having seen a 64 thousand ton ship dock before , it was a sight to behold!
Try to remember that scene from "2001", where the space shuttle attempts to dock to the space station and Wagner playing in the background...
It was awe inspiring to behold! The tugs pulled and pushed us in, and when we were close enough to the pier/dock, one of the crew threw a line, attached to a hawser, to a man on the dock. It was something to see a 64,000 tons ship taken in with the caress of her mother's hand on her newborn baby. The whole process took about 40 minutes Joel and I stood there looking at the power of something we had never seen before. When we were securely tied to the docks and the gang plank was finally let down and customs had come aboard and seen our passports we were free to go into the country of the Beatles. As we were about to leave, Joel gave out all the portraits he had drawn of crew and officers, I had gone to seamen Williker and made my goodbyes and thank Him for the knowledge He gave me, For what might come in my future on this time ship called life. As I turned to leave, Williker said, "Take this note with you and find a cabbie passed the docks and ask him to take you to, "the Weeping Eye", it's the seamen's hostile, and open 24 seven for seamen. Give this note to Andre. He is normally on the 4 to 8 watch, Tell him this comes from me, and you will have a bed and food. We will be off duty for at least 17 hours shortly. While they unload and load cargo. We will come by, Myself, Moriarty and Farare. Be safe Laddybuck!"
The first thing we noticed when we got past the warehouses to hail a taxi, was even though we all spoke English, it was COMPLETELY different ! The second thing we noticed , was that no matter where in England you wanted to go , the cabby's knew how to get there! Apparently , ALL cabbys'
had to not only take a driving test, but also a "MAP", test on all routes in the county they wished to drive in! WE arrived at the "WEEPING EYE", as tired as any kidd could be, seeing as how we were in a New country THAT SPOKE ENGLISH! hahaha.

Saturday, December 26, 2009

A Life In The Day (57)

Later that night, as I met Willeker in the crews mess, He explained to me the nature of the
watches on board ship. The shifts , 2 hrs. stand by , in the mess , 1 hr. at the helm and 1 hr. on bow watch. His first hour was to be the bow, for him, so he asked if I wanted to join him?
"HELL YES!", I said!
There was an eeriness that's hard to explain. I don't know if I'll be able to do it justice..............
As you walked out on deck at midnight from the hatch-ways, all light and sound ceases. All one "hears" was heard thur the exposed skin to the night breeze, that blow across the black ocean.
The further away from the crews quarters amid-ship, the darker the world seemed to get.
The whole time I really didn't bother to look up, but when I did, I gasped with such awe that I fell back on my ass, dizzy and REALLY SCARED!!!!! I was speechless! I couldn't take my eyes off the heavens! I kept thinking, "I am such a nothing in it all!"
I felt like every Modern Day Space Hero I'd ever read about as a kid. Buck Rodgers, Flash Gordon, John Glenn, Capt. Jet!
The magnitude of it all! THE TOTAL BLACKNESS OF IT ALL! And then to see the millions of silver points of light that Gawd happened to sneeze on that black velvet! HOLY SHIT !!
Williker just leaned against one of the hatches and chuckled a bit and said,
"I'll see you at the bow, son. When your done introducing yourself to Gawd."
I really am not sure how long I lay there on the deck, but Williker must have said something to
the seaman he had relieved, I wasn't disturbed for at least 1/2 hr. When I finally pulled myself together and made it to the bow, Williker was having a smoke and looking at the night sky also. Before I could say anything and without turning around asked,
" Well son? are you and Gawd on speaking terms yet?"
"What made you ask that?", I asked.
"Well", he said, "when I saw the look on you and your friends face, telling about what the two of you saw in that village in Central America, I kinda got the feeling that the two of you might of stopped believing in the Almighty. So I thought that a personal meeting between you and HE might be in order.Was I very far off the mark?"
All I could do was stand there and start to cry like a big baby.
He, like my Father might have done , just walked over and put an arm around my shoulder and said,
" I get the feeling that life is going to hold more surprises for you, son. Just be ready for them when they come to get in your face."
After that, we just stood there and looked for any distant lights on the horizon until his hour on watch was up, then we walked back to the crews mess and drank coffee and talked for two hours.
The rest of the voyage was pretty uneventful, but I made it a habit to be on Willikers midnight to 4am watch from that time forward.
On some mornings while we were at the bow, we would talk of poetry, sometimes of his wife, sometimes of why I ran away from home, of what to look out for whenever I would hit a port city anywhere in the world, but ALL the times he talked? I listened!

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

A Life In The Day (56)

---------------BOW WATCH----------------

and the face of God


As the day rolled on, Joel and I, drifted off to our cabins and got what made us feel good in our minds and hearts. We walked back to our cabin. Joel got His drawing paper, I got my writing paper.

Joel then went to the aft part of the ship, got comfortable on the poop deck and proceeded to draw the seamen at work "chipping the deck", in preparation for the "red leading",




The process of "CHIPPING", is done with an instrument that looks like a short handled WEED WHACKER, protruding from the edges are rounded metal projections about 5/8" long, that vibrate at a high rate of speed. When held to the deck, it "CHIPS", the rusted metal off the deck. After 1/2 an hour , your arms feel like you've worked with a jack hammer for the day long! Smoke brakes were standard every 20 minutes. All this being done for that section of deck for that day, all the rust chips would be washed off the decks with sea water and allowed to dry as the rest would have lunch. As the crew returned, they would start to swab the decks with fish oil drawn from 50 gal. barrels and left to dry for 1/2 hour, at which point the decks would be swabbed with "RED LEAD", or the same thing that is on the "GOLDEN GATE BRIDGE", to give it that color. After an hour or so the crew would come back again to swab the decks with "Black" paint and the job was then considered done.

It seemed that work on board a freighter at sea was/ is basically "BUSY WORK", until a port is reached.


Joel would try to look inconspicuous as He drew, but some of the crew would notice and attempt to look as GALLANT at their work as possible. hahaha, ( for Joel had shown some of His work in the mess hall and the crew could see that He was good at His calling.

Joel did this for the rest of the day and seemed to come out from it all lighter and refreshed. He smiled more for the rest of the voyage.

I on the other hand took my interests to the bow of the ship, for me the future was my calling......

It was one of those days where the storm was receding in the past , both metaphorically and in reality, and the sun was beginning to shine its face on my face.

At that time of day I was alone to think on what road I would walk in my tomorrows. Would there be days of riches? poverty? drama? pain? love? tears? I thought "the future would take care of itself." I sat there pretty much for the rest of the day, occasionally looking over the bow to see playful Dolphins swimming along side of us and wondering ,"what is going Thu their minds?, how many ships through out time had they escorted to adventure or ruin?"

I was in a state of dreams, I saw myself as the GREAT Voyager "ODYSSEUS". It was rather presumptuous of me , but hey! I was 17! hahaha !

I was pulled out of my reveries by one of the older crewmen, who I came to know and learn a few of life's lessons. I developed a strong respect for this old fart!

It was dinner time and as we sat at table, the seamen started to ask about other aspects of previous remarks, all the time staying away from any reference of the village but asking for just more telling of "stories around the campfire..........."

Toward the end of the meal and into desert, conversation just seemed to wander like a puppy chasing a slow rabbit. That's when the old sea dog, WILLIKER, by name , started up a conversation with me pretty much to see where my head was. It seemed that in his youth he taught philosophy at some university in Belgem and took to the sea after his wife died, (a precursor of my future.). We hit it off mentally and something more..........ethereal, metaphysical. He noted that he had seen me at the bow for a good part of the day looking both at the sky and the sea and wondered what I saw in the two?

It took me a while to assess the question. no one had EVER asked me a question like that before!

After awhile, he asked me if I wanted to meet him for bow watch at midnight.........and see the face of Gawd?

Sunday, October 11, 2009

A Life In The Day (55)

................................................................................................................................sorry for being away so long folks, but I'm back now.......................................................................................................................Since it was Sunday and the crew had pretty much nothing to do until watch change, we all just sat around the mess hall, and Joel and I talked and the crew just listened as we unfolded the happenings of the past few months...........As we sat there and told of our experiences with the BULL SOW, (oxy-moron!), that was stoned on phycotropic fruit, or Joel knocking Himself out with His bolo while hunting, or the attack of the killer MOTHS, and the killer Tarantulas, or the riding of adolescent Crabs in the river,or the meeting of THE BANDIT KING, they all laughed with uproarious mirth! When we came to the massacre of the village.............Joel started to silently cry and the crew either lowered their eyes or looked at us with either horror or pity.It was then that I realised my stupidity. I had no idea that I was either so double jointed or that I could fit my size 10 foot into my mouth. I unwittingly had sucked the air out of the room! I tried to pull the fat out of the fire by quickly changing the subject to the valley of light and finding the river of GOLD!, and the Piranhas in it, and later the territorial Headhunters as we were leaving our camp site, with our packs filled with the river gold. I believe that some of the seamen picked up on what I was attempting to do in changing the subject so as to get Joel out of His private hell. Some of them laughed overly hard at my telling how we had outsmarted the assayer in his office, at his own game.This work was harder than I thought. I started talking about the dumb things we had done to the dumbest things we had done, as time progressed the seamen started to get into a state of jocularity at our silliness of our adventure and Joel came out of his funk. I kept talking about more dumb things and it was obvious by Joel's demeanor that he was coming out of His hell. As the morning wore on, the Sun seemed to shine in the mess hall.
Finally the watch was changed, and we decided to go out and look at the sea without roiling stomach's. Joel and I went to the poop deck and looked out at what we were leaving behind.. An old life in America and a new life in who knew where..............................
............. and then I said,"Aw,fuck it. Tomorrow's another day."