Yeah, it was an interesting year. I look back and think that I am really glad that I moved to Phoenix. Do I miss my friends and my cat in DC? Yes, but I like my new friends here and Gary send me pictures of my cat, I know she’s ok.
I had my first summer here and the temperatures got pretty hot as far as I was concerned it was 118 on June 29th and that was pretty uncomfortable, but I really didn’t mind it until it surpassed 115. The coldest day that we had that I was here was of course my birthday, December 6th, and it was 37 degrees… I was miserable anyway so didn’t notice to much. I didn’t like the few days that were humid at all, the dry heat is really what makes this place so nice for me.
Besides the weather here, which I really love, what I like most about Phoenix is the A.A. There are so many more options here than there were in DC and they are a lot less politically correct than DC. Are they big book thumping, tradition defending meetings? well not yet, but they are a refreshing change to what I found in DC.
As I reflect on what happened in the last year and start to look forward to the New Year, I find that I want many of the same things that I had happen to me in 2013. I’m hopeful that this is going to be a better year and full of change!
Saturday morning I was up early to catch a 6:30 flight to BWI. My first trip back to DC since I moved. I had called a cab the night before and they assured me they would be here on time – they called when I was still naked but I assured them I’d be down there in about 10 minutes. When I got down stairs the taxi was driving around the parking lot and another taxi was shadowing him, my phone rang the taxi guy wanted to know which building and I told him how to find me… I also asked about the taxi taking him and he assured me he didn’t know. When we pulled out onto Thomas the other taxi turned the other way. On the way to the airport I asked if I could roll down the window in the back and he said no, “You’ll be cold” he said. I rolled my eyes at him and if I had had my coffee I might not have been as irritated as I was… but then the music started. Over his communication radio came some music from his homeland and it was all crackly and staticky and played the whole way…. arrgghh.
I got through airport security quickly enough, stood in line for coffee for over 20 minutes (they really need more coffee places) and before I knew it I was boarding the plane. The plane ride was uneventful, I slept an hour or so and read the book The Ocean at the End of the Lane. As we descended into Baltimore I noticed the leaves changing and wasn’t awed or inspired, yes, now they’re orange, gold, yellow and red… /yawn
My good friend Jim picked me up at the airport and was happy to see him. I gave him a big hug and knew all was right with the world. We started chatting right away about all kinds of things “How are the kids? How are the grandkids? Where’s Ana?” I asked. We stopped to have lunch and chatted some more. I wanted to get to the house in Washington to see Mouse (the cat) as she’d been alone for about 24 hours so Jim drove me into the city. I hugged my friend farewell, I knew I’d see him Monday morning and we clarified all of that.
Upon entering my old residence I attempted to open the door with my Scottsdale apartment key … but quickly was inside, video camera in hand to try to capture a super Youtube viral video of which my cat didn’t participate… she was very cautious about sniffing me and letting me touch her, oh well.
I spent a few hours with Mouse and put some personal hygiene products away before heading to Pentagon City Mall to have dinner with my best friend Suzanne. Now that was a very involved conversation – I’m going through a small rough patch and she drove all the way up from Virginia Beach (3 1/2 hours) to see me and make sure I was ok. We talked about her too, it’s not just about me. Just seeing her and spending that time with her was worth the trip. She’s the type of friend that won’t let me live in my own shit, she shows me the way when I’m in the dark – she’s always been that for me.
Saturday night as I fell asleep on the couch at Gary’s Mouse slept near me, but not too near.. :-) Sunday morning she followed me around as I showered and headed out for a day of stuff. I headed to Annie’s Steak House for breakfast with my friend Steve. I ate there every Sunday morning that I was home and almost always ate their Grilled Chicken Salad for breakfast, lunch or dinner – I really like it.
After breakfast I headed over to a gay AA meeting to see old friends. The meeting was ok. It was nice to see some people and hear all the latest gossip and drama. I then had lunch with my friend Jason, it was nice to talk to him and see what’s been going on. I also talked with him about some work stuff and discovered interesting tidbits.
I didn’t get back to Gary’s until afternoon and Mouse was starving and suddenly very friendly – she gets fed one wet meal a day and she was convinced it was time – I held off until 2:30 and then gave in to her. After she eats then she wants nothing to do with you and finds a dark spot to take a nap. I took a brief nap and then had to head out to have dinner with some other friends – this time at the Cheesecake Factory.
I was anticipating more friends than arrived, but things come up. It was Danny, Steve and Cynthia with me for dinner and it was such a great experience – the waitress was odd and gave us moments to question if we were on TV or something a few times. It was so nice to see these folks and hear about the growth of the meeting, their lives and talk to them – I really miss them. The night was well worth the the trip to DC. When we finished after hugs and “see you Tuesday?” Cynthia dropped me off at Jinx Proof tattoos so I could see her paramour and my friend Matthew. I wanted to make sure it was ok to ask another tattoo guy in his shop to do a big tattoo for me… the guy is known for his superhero/comic book tattoos and it’s just amazing… I also wanted to see Matthew as he couldn’t make dinner. I’ve known some of these folks such as short time but really connect with them – Matthew feels like one of those friends I’ve always known. I walked back to Gary’s from Georgetown – 3.7 miles… this is something I used to do all the time but my legs really ached after – I need to walk more again.
Monday morning I awoke at six was out of the house by 7 to meet Jim in Takoma Park. We stopped at the 7/11 for coffee and then proceeded to his house where I looked at the QuickBooks account, sorted files, paid bills, fixed computer bugs (not viruses, just minor annoyances) and then helped his wife Ana, with some computer issues and taught her a few new tricks – she’s a great student. I spent the entire day with the DiLuigi’s and it was very nice to do so, they’ve always been family and mean the world to me. Jim shocked Ana and I by deciding to go through and throw away old files… like over 25 years old… It was nice to look at papers that referenced the forming of the American’s with Disabilities Act and know that this man was a part of that back then. We ended the day at Outback, and had more and more conversations before I headed back to DC.
Gary and Ian had been in Fort Lauderdale for the last few days and I finally got the chance to see them. Mouse was there too and was kind of lovable. It was nice to see my old roommate and I commented how nice it was of him to leave my bathroom the same as it was when I left – all my toiletries were exactly where i left them. Before I knew it I had to go to bed, I was to be up at 6 to go back to Jim’s – this night Mouse slept with me and it was nice – she usually sleeps down at my feet under the covers so no tossing and turning :-)
Tuesday after more work at Jim and Ana’s we went to Maggiano’s to have lunch. It was the DiLuigi’s, Gary and Ian. We had family style and took our time, I think we had a three hour lunch. The conversations ranged from horse racing and church to the way Ian pronounces “garage” – the English are wonderful.
Tuesday night I attended my home group, the Tuesday Night Big Book Study – the best meeting in Washington DC. The room was packed full of people and all the founders were there. After the first reading I shared and then my friends shared and then other people shared and it was wonderful… I needed that. AA here in Scottsdale is nice, but the TNBBS is top rated. I was able to see Taylor and Laura who couldn’t make the dinner on Sunday and got so many hugs and … ahhhh…. what a great group. Afterwards Danny, Matthew and I had a quick stop at the Cosi chatting away until they closed the place at 9. Matthew and I drove over to his and Cynthia’s new house (7)42 is the house number (the seven is silent) and they really picked a great place – enough room for the both of them, spacious and I’m happy for them! I saw their kitties as well.
My last night at Gary’s and we were up til 11 chatting and watching shows he likes. Mouse slept with me kind of. I packed the next morning quickly had breakfast, shipped a portrait of myself that my friend Ron had painted and said my good byes. No tears this time, no hard goodbyes, just knowing everyone’s ok is nice.
Jim picked me up at the metro, we went to lunch and then he dropped me off at BWI. Again no hard goodbyes, but a strong hug and smile from my friend.
It was a great trip to DC, it was cold at times… but it was nice to see friends and family… I imagine I’ll have to go back again in 6 months or so…
This morning I’m boarding a flight for Washington DC. I’m very excited to see a lot of people and one cat:
Danny (I had to put him first he has issues :-) )
and at the same time I am dreading going back – Washington DC has become like a trip to Wisconsin for me – rush rush rush rush rush rush… everyone wants to see me and I can’t see everyone – popularity breeds contempt… right?
I’m also picking up my portrait that my friend Ron painted of me, but I’m not sure what I’m going to do with it yet.
The most important part is I’ll get to eat my salad again!
I get the impression that it’s very un-American to not care much for baseball.
Back in school I think we played softball and I was usually one of the last kids picked – I never got that dad who wanted to play catch in the back yard, mine always wanted to drink or beat the shit out of our mom whenever he wasn’t in jail or running from the cops.
When I went out to L.A. to play softball (well I went for the Big Meeting) I actually hit the ball once – it flew straight into the air and I was baffled where it went, more likely shocked that the bat and ball connected. The ball came straight down on top of my head with a loud bonk, fortunately for me I didn’t have to play anymore softball.
The next trip to L.A. my friend Terry thought it would be fun to go to a Dodgers game – Terry obviously didn’t know me as well as I thought he did. It was rather boring, spending all that time in traffic to then spend all that time amongst people yelling and drinking and carrying on. But I did finally get to know what the seventh inning stretch is, I had never known that people just stand up and stretch… seems like an awfully lame thing to get such a big cliche.
I’ve watched (mostly because it was on in the background) parts of the World Series a year or two… but haven’t really connected. This year I’ve been bombarded by media, social media and friends who are all excited about the Nationals and I’ve been checking out the scores and listening in the background trying to figure out if they’re still doing well. It’s rather exciting to have your home team doing this well, and I’m proud of them. I hope they keep getting touchdowns and laps or whatever so my friends will be happier and the town can once again know the feeling of a winning team – we all know the Redskins aren’t going to do it again this year.
Last night I dreamed that he wrote a long email to his friends and cc’d me to let them know the reason he decided to call it off was because I didn’t have good earning potential and that he really didn’t like cats after all. Seeing as how I’m not really sure what his reasons were these reasons seems about as sane as any other.
I’ve been asked over and over again if there were any clues to this coming, what happened, and what happens now. It’s been suggested to me that I help clear up some of that so folks will have a better grasp of everything.
He arrived on Saturday and I really didn’t have a clue that anything was really wrong until Tuesday. In fact I would say Monday was one of the best days ever and he had expressed having a really great day as well. We had dinner with two friends on Monday night and after those two friends knew we were deep in love – so did I.
I had printed out a DC marriage license and suggested that he fill it out as he has better hand writing – and I found it odd that it sat there from Saturday until he left. That was the only big thing that should have given me warning that something was up.
We didn’t argue about anything major, nothing that’ll really knock your socks off… some of it had to do with Dancing with the Stars, Glee, Cleanliness, neatness, vacations, and the definition of a relationship. He seemed to think that I needed to watch all the TV shows that he watched, and do all the things that he wanted to do.Part of his vacation plans each year are one week in NYC and one week in San Francisco, and I suggested that we might need separate vacations – not just because I’m not a fan of San Francisco – as I would only have 2 weeks of vacation a year at a new job (hopefully) and I’d like to enjoy that time. This was apparently the last straw for him.
It seemed to me like he wanted me to like all the things he liked and do all the things he did. I told him that wasn’t reasonable and that a marriage wasn’t about me just fitting into his mold, but us making new molds together. His argument was that if we were together I should have a good time regardless of what it was – my retort was that if I took him to the dentist I’d still not have a good time. He just stared at me like I was speaking in tongues.
Full disclosure here – he had expressed interest, when we planned this trip here, to go see the monuments. I was very clear that this wasn’t something I had any interest in doing. I’ve toured the monuments every time a friend or family member has come to visit and they really don’t do a thing for me – He’s been to DC several times and had seen them before. I suggested that he do this while I was at work, but he was adamant about it and I finally gave in and went with him. I was NOT over-joyed, but was a good tour guide, I pointed things out he might not have known about (the FDR and it turns out he hadn’t ever been) and talked about the cherry tree’s and we got to see the MLK Monument construction. I only complained during this tour after what had to be the 25th photo of the Washington Monument. As we left the Jefferson Memorial I reminded him that he wanted to see Dorothy’s Shoes – and he said it wasn’t important, so we headed home as we had a play to see that evening.
At this point I really don’t think anything is wrong, the previous night we had a minor tiff and both apologized to one another and slept like normal people. But he’s apparently been holding on to somethings (including not seeing Dorothy’s Shoes, having to vacation in Maui with me for my birthday…) which he’s about to bring up. So we had the same argument again basically and then walked in virtual silence to the play. I really couldn’t tell you if the play was good, it might have been had he and I been talking to one another.
On the walk home he finally started to talk to me and said he didn’t know what to say. So I opted to talk and it went something like this:
“I don’t want to hurt your feelings or anything but I think I have to tell you something.” me
“I completely agree” him
“You don’t even know what I was going to say” I say and look at him, I can kind of tell what’s coming but can’t really believe it. “I think you should go to New York yourself this weekend and figure out what you really want.”
“I don’t want to marry you.” he says
We’re still in the street on the way to the house and it’s like I’ve been slapped in the face… but I say: “Ok”
When we get to the house I tell him to sleep upstairs and I’ll sleep on the couch. I text my best friends to let them know what’s happening and try to get some sleep.
(it’s Thursday) In the morning I heard him finish packing and I offered to print his Amtrak ticket info for Friday, he said “that would be nice” and I did so.
When I cam down stairs and handed him his Amtrak info he looked at me and said:
“Please don’t stay in touch, I’m not at all interested.”
Really, that’s how it happened – I’m really flabbergasted. I’ve cried quite a bit, I’ve had hours of lying in my bed trying to sleep and entirely to many hours thinking and replaying the whole thing. I keep wondering what I really did wrong or what the truth is, as none of this seems plausible at all. Several people have pointed out that it’s better we discover this now instead of waiting until I was fully immersed in TX.
How am I doing? Well, I’m still pretty screwed up about the whole thing. I’m really tired of all the phone calls and texts from friends, yes I know they do it because they love me and they know it annoys me so I know that brings them joy. :-P
I’ll get through this and move on to better and brighter things and maybe some day I’ll discover what really happened here… but apparently not today.