I'm returning to my autobiography where I left off some twenty days ago. I'll provide a link to the last posting of it. The year is 1983 when I was twenty eight. I'm really old. But the good thing about recounting your past, it makes you feel young again. It seems like yesterday.
As I had no girlfriend now, I spent all my free time with my friends or reading or writing in my journal. I was working most weekdays on all sorts of electrical jobs and saving up money. We had our weekly poker games, a few parties and the Starry Plough nearby for entertainment. I bought my second car, a 72 Bel Air for 300 dollars and with Hiram for company, drove it to Santa Cruz, then Lemoore, to visit his folks, L.A. and San Diego, visiting all our friends. The most remarkable thing about this trip was that the car made it back.
In early July of 1983, my life was transformed. I met Dale. She was ten years older than me but was still extremely beautiful. She was refined. She had elegance, poise, grace, the most feminine of voices, southern gentility and class. She had traveled the world and I fell completely in love.
The first journal entry that mentions her is some two and a half weeks after our first encounter. But it strives to capture the details and spirit of those first meetings.
“My life has been spinning at a dizzy pace, with emotions thrown far out of balance, jobs changed, a broken car that eats up all my savings, and a lovely woman, who has given me more pleasure in the last two weeks than I’ve ever received up to now, from the opposite sex.
I have no clue how the affair will proceed but my heart hinges on it…”
I first saw her in my back yard July 3rd, at my barbecue party, mid-afternoon.
This was a large, successful party I threw in the back courtyard, some thirty people attending. John Seebach had invited some friends from a warehouse he’d just moved into and so on that day I first met Jim H., Bruno R., and Tina, a red head German girl, all of whom would become very close friends and play important roles in my future. When it rains, it pours.
“I was high on M.D.A. and alcohol. She wore a short dress, modish and stepped lightly, smiling. Beautiful weather, the holiday and our high spirits contributed to protract the party till five a.m.. We talked a bit that afternoon, though I recall nothing, not even introductions. At ten we were talking more intimately with Tina and Jim about getting coke. Bones and May had split. About fifteen remained. Hiram drove me and Dale (to get coke). We talked in the car, where her charm first began to affect me. We did more lines later with Mike and Steve, neglecting others, us four and Laurel sitting around my table, Steve playing songs while we listened and talked, all high. I had no plans of impressing her but enjoyed her company. At five Steve drove her home”.
It’s strange what the memory chooses to retain. If I hadn’t written this account long ago I would have forgotten I first met her here. I distinctly remember first meeting Jim and Bruno on this day, and Tina, who made a grand entrance on her loud motorcycle, but nothing of what happened to them later that night. Perhaps I was too far gone. Yet my next encounter with Dale, four days later I recall clearly, in great detail because it was on this occasion that I fell in love.
“Next Wednesday, after a hard day of work at a restaurant in San Jose, Bones and I bounce back into the Plough at seven p.m.. Dale is sitting at a table with Maggie and her child (a little girl, four years old) and two men. She comes to the bar between Bones and me. We all talk for a while. I go to the bathroom and she tells Bones she likes me much. He tells this to me a few minutes later as she goes to the bathroom. Then he leaves, telling me I should ‘go for it’.
She returns, sits by me and we begin to get acquainted. We talk of France (where we’d both been), music, our shared interests, the ‘Talking Heads’. We drink three pints each over one and a half hours and set a date for next Saturday.
Hard work through Friday, pensive on Dale. She is beautiful in body and face and carriage, a little shorter than me, not quite petite, small arms, tan, very lady-like mannerisms, language and voice, (she had the most beautiful and feminine voice of any woman I ever met, complimented even more by her Southern accent. She grew up in Pensacola, Florida), charming smiles and glances, polite. Perhaps ten years older than me with some aspects of her face verging on a look of middle-age, yet still eminently pretty. She has a refinement and consideration for others of someone in middle-age, yet a grasping after youthful sprees and parties and drugs, even more than I, who am somewhat disenchanted with that scene at present though I seem to continue in it prodigiously”.