Friday July 01, 05
Life is list of meaningful occurrences Part II
When I was twenty-three (1990):
- I moved out of the house that I shared with Paul and moved into Karen's apartment.
- Karen was sleeping with this idiotic creep named Peter. Peter and B knew each other from high school.
- The four of us went out into the gulf one night. I was under the influence of LSD. No one else was tripping but me. Karen and Peter took a hit but couldn't trip as they had taken a hit the night before. I was having a bad trip. B started messing with me, as he was pissed that I took the acid. He was against it. So this was his way of getting back at me. Next thing you know, the boat starts taking in water. The swells were getting larger and it was getting dark. The boat would not start and the lights would not come on. I was in the middle of the worst trip you could imagine. Karen and I had to get on the bow to weigh down the front of the boat so that we would not sink. Peter and B bailed the water out of the boat. All I could think of was my mother. I wanted to be able to say goodbye. Was I going to die out there in the gulf that night?! Finally, Sea Tow spotted us. Thank God. We were rescued. They towed us back to shore. I continued to see B but never was able to look at him in the same way. I could never feel safe with him again.
- Izzy returned from California. He tells me that he had his money returned three months prior. After Customs' take and his attorney's fees, he gets a little over 60k back. He wire transfers most of it to a bank in Zurich, Switzerland, where his sister lives.
- I was fumigating. That relationship was over. He was a cheapskate. And besides, I was in love with B.
- Izzy would not give up. He begged for me to forgive him. He knew about B and said it didn't matter. He said he wanted to go to Europe. That we could finally fulfill our dreams.
- I started sleeping with B and Izzy. Izzy knew but B didn't.
- Depeche Mode was on my playlist often.
When I was twenty-three and a few months (1991):
- I was in love with two men. I was having the time of my life, yet I also knew that this was not to last. Although Izzy was happy that I was sleeping with him, and was willing to tolerate me having an affair with B, I knew that B would not be so understanding once he found out. Karen was helping me to keep my dual lover status hidden from B. I started to feel a little guilty. But, I never once felt sleazy. That was not a concept that I bought into. Fortunately, the men I had been with also believed that a woman could have at least as strong of a sex drive as a man. This was true about me. I loved making love with a passion.
- Izzy tells me that he wants to go to Europe. Karen convinces me that I should go. She said "You have a crap job, Izzy loves you, your dream has been to go to Europe, and besides what are you going to do -- marry B, a carpet cleaner's son?"
- Izzy and I went to a travel agent and bought two roundtrip tickets to Amsterdam. I told him that I would not go unless I had a ticket home, in hand.
- Izzy took me shopping. We bought matching black leather jackets.
- January 14th, 1991. I told B that I decided to go to Europe with Izzy. He was crushed. I felt horrible. Was I doing the right thing? I was still in love with B. Leaving would be a terrible sacrifice. But going to Europe was a dream of mine for so long. If I didn't go then, when would I get another chance to go?! I made the decision with my head and not my heart.
- I called work and told the manager, "I quit. I am going to Europe. Later (assholes)!" It was like winning the lottery and being able to leave a shitty life behind. I felt hopeful and liberated.
- January 16th, The Persian Gulf War starts. We fly to Amsterdam that same day. The flight was nine hours long. I listened to New Order's Substance. When the plane took off, Ceremony played through the earphones of my Walkman. I had a smile on my face from one ear to the next. Yet, deep inside I already felt a loss. I missed B, but this would have to remain my painful secret.
Europe (January 1991):
- We arrived in Amsterdam late that evening and checked into a bed and breakfast, not too far from the train station.
- We had some beers that night in the pub of the B&B. I met three drunk English guys who were dissing the French. One ended up peeing on the floor of the bar. Crazy!
- The next morning, we went car shopping. By the end of the night, Izzy had bought a used Ford Opel. We now had wheels to travel across Europe. Oh goodie. He purchased a six-month insurance policy, got the tags, and we took off towards Zurich, Switzerland. We stopped in Luxembourg, Belgium, and France for five minutes.(They denied us entrance, as Izzy is Israeli and needed a Visa to enter France.) We turned around and went through Germany instead. One of the highlights of the trip was driving on the Autobahn. While the Opel would only go about 65 mph maximum, BMW's and Mercedes-Benz's were flying past us in the left lane, doing at least 100 mph. I had never seen so many Mercedes cars in my life. Ah, but I would see even more when in Israel.
- We arrived in Zurich. We stayed in an apartment owned by Izzy's sister and her Swiss husband. They had a one-year old son named Daniel. Daniel was not circumcised. I felt bad, as it is a requirement for Jewish males to be circumcised. The husband was not Jewish, so they decided Daniel would blend into Swiss culture better if he was not cut. They feared that he would be discriminated against, as anti-Semitism was still flourishing. That was when I realized for the first time that it is uncommon for European men to be circumcised unless they are Jewish. All the males in my family are circumcised. Yet we are not Jewish. American males were and are still routinely circumcised. It used to be done for health reasons. Now I think it has more to do with aesthetics and custom.
- We stayed in Zurich for about a month and a half. I hated it. The people were very unfriendly, stuffy, and too serious. I couldn't wait to continue on our travels.
- We drove to Milan. Armed guards with Uzi's were all over the city. The Gulf War was in full swing. Next we went to Venice -- beautiful. The annual Mardi Gras festival was cancelled because of the war. This was a big disappointment. Though I did get to see the Bridge of Sighs. The highlight of Venice though was when Izzy and I got lost walking down one of the winding roads. We ended up making love in a corridor. Being the sex fiends that we were, we couldn't resist.
- Next we drove to Florence. What a beautiful city destroyed by graffiti! Virtually every statue and bridge was marked. I felt sickened. We went to Galleria dell'Accademia and saw The Statue of David. It was breathtaking. As we left the museum, Izzy realized that he had been pick pocketed 2k in traveler's checks. We filed a police report then spent the rest of the day getting the checks replaced at the American Express office.
- Then we headed For Prague. This city was absolutely amazing. The country had just recently abandoned its communist roots. It was a city in transition. While almost all the colors there were dark and dreary, there was an atmosphere of hope. A band played Beatles tunes in the square at night. Just a few years prior, this would have been impossible.
- Then we went to Austria -- my favorite country in all of Europe. It was awesome. The architecture was breathtaking and the people were extremely kind and generous. Vienna remains my favorite city in Europe.
- My brother and his wife had their second and last child -- a son.
- We returned to Zurich. The war was making it unsafe to continue to travel at that time. We stayed there for another month and a half. Izzy wanted to wait until the war ended so that we could fly to Israel to meet his parents. Who knew how long it was going to continue?! I was bored out of my mind. All I did was wake, eat, smoke, eat, sleep, wake, eat, and smoke. I was putting on weight. Before leaving for Europe, I weighed 105Lbs. I was at least ten pounds heavier now. Was it from all those Swiss chocolate bars? Or something else?
- My frustration led me to make the decision to return to the US. I wanted to get back home ASAP. I missed my country and family. I wanted to go back to college and make something of my life. Israel drove me back to Amsterdam. We spent the night in the same B&B. We made love then cried. Was this the last time that we would ever see each other? Was it over for good?
- I looked at Izzy, turned around, then boarded the plane back to the US. I was sad but hopeful as well.
Back in the USA (1991):
From the beginning