Sunday, October 21, 2007
A Life In The Day (34)
JUNGLES,(and eventually the gold)
We came to Veracruz with no preconceived ideas of what to expect,
all we knew was that we smelled of kerosene and were ready for another adventure ! ha ha ha .
Veracruz isn't anything today like it was in the 60's . Then it was a free booting beach town with plenty of European tourists and locales trying to sell everything from splinters of the "TRUE CROSS" , to maps of "The Fountain of Youth" drawn by PONCE DE LEON.
To Joel , it meant a new and varied feeding ground for his perusal of snacks to put on his plate . (remember that Joel had JUST lost his virginity a few months ago and at this point he thought that the world was nothing more then a woman with her legs spread..)
For me ? The beach was all that I really wanted , it seems strange that even then , the sea was calling to my soul .........
I would hang out by the fishermens beaches and watched how after a day of fishing and clearing their nets ......... I just sat there on the beaches and absorbed all that I saw....
If there was work to be done and I could help , I would offer ......at first I was treated with some suspicion , but after a while of seeing my earnestness and the questions I asked AND not asking for pay . (they thought I was a retard or dumb ! ), they finally accepted me with benevolent mirth and gratitude .
((In 1963 when I first ran away from ......home (?) I ran to the waters of the sea to Balboa Peninsula on the Southern California Coast where I managed to sleep under a MERRY -GO - ROUND by The Pavilion until I could find a CHEAP room with the money that I had squirrelled away form my mother while working my jobs after school .
You want to hear of a horror story to challenge "MOMMY DEAREST"?
Hang on ! ............)
(Remember that I had said earlier that my mother had gone WACKO?
At times she pushed it over the edge before the movie came out !
Liver was cheap from the butcher shop back in the day , to the extent that it turned out to be a staple at the table.(I HATE LIVER!!!! either smothered in onions , or covered in threats of a beatings with a coat hanger !). As a kid of 13 , before step-dad #3 , I would be told not to get up from the table until I cleaned up my plate , and do it fast so I could go to bed and mother could go out ................
My revulsion to Liver was so pronounced that even with threats I wouldn't eat IT !
I remember only that it was late one evening and I was so sleepy that I fell asleep with my face in the plate.
I was awakened to the strident voice of a terrifying Harpie behind and above me beating my back with a wire coat hanger screaming , "How dare you for not eating your food that I sacrificed to bring to this table for you ! and all you do is is leave it to spoil ! there are children in China starving for lack of food , and here you sit with ungratefulness ! "
I ate ..she stopped beating me ...I got up in tears from the table...I took 3 steps towards her and threw up on her going out party dress !!!!!!!!! , or the time that I got a job selling violets on street corners for 35 cents a bunch from 8am to 6pm on Saturdays and Sundays only to come home to have my money taken from me by her and told that it was going into the bank , (I never saw a bank book !), or the Most awakening moment when I had a job at, " KRESSGY'S 5 and Dime Store" with their counter cafe. I was a dishwasher there after school for money to buy dumb things , like shoes I wanted , or books that I wanted , or paper and pencils I wanted for school that I needed .
At the end of the week we would all get paid in cash and leave Thur the employees door to go our separate ways ..... one nite my mother was standing out there dressed to kill , the guys later said that she was a knock-out and even though she was beautiful ( think RITA MORENO in West Side Story and you would see Her twin !) , felt sorry for me for what she did .!
I saw her there and was proud for having such a stunning and beautiful mother and walked up to her and beam where upon without so much as a , "hello", she tells me to give her my pay envelop ! I said "no , I need paper and drafting erasers of my drafting class.", she then proceeded to slap the shit out of me and said "don't you EVER talk back to me !"
she rocked me back on my heels , my face was a pallet of colors, my eyes watered , I didn't drop a tear .the other guys were standing around and in back of her , they didn't know what to think , I didn't give a shit . I gave her the pay envelop and walked away ..................
At that moment , she ceased to exist both in my mind and my heart as she was destined to 10 years in the future along with her future husband and my 2 brothers and 2 sisters............
hit head on , on X-MAS EVE by a happy fucking drunk doing over a hundred MPH on the Santa Monica Freeway !
Suffice it to say that the next morning I skipped class to see the manager to ask him to doctor my pay slips in the future so that he had his REAL records but in my envelop to have it say $10 less each and every time . (apparently he had heard what had happened the night before , news travels fast in small communities of a store work force...... ) , he was understanding and said ,
"ok , kid. " ))
Sorry folks , I kinda got side tracked into the juvenile pit of hell ......
When I did find a place to stay in BALBOA , I then managed to get not 1 but 2 part time jobs , one at a cafe on the peninsula washing dishes and all I could eat of the leftovers at the end of the night , and the other at a liquor store to hide a six-pack of beer a week for excitement. ha ha ha AND an apartment on the island and since school was starting in a couple of weeks managed to enroll myself in CORONA DEL MAR High School by forging parental signatures .Even in a runaway situation I managed to maintain a 3.4 average.
While attending classes I became friends with Neal Darling , and as it turned out He and his father lived in the bay on a 70' Yawl sailboat. I was fascinated by all the stories that I heard from his father and the magical mysteries of the boat and the sea itself !! :)
I do believe that that was the time , no the Moment that set the corner stone of my love for the sea.