Tuesday, November 01, 2005

So Not Eligible For VH-1's "Best Week Ever"

We all know that life is full of ups and downs and that the downs allow us to appreciate the ups. The problem is that when you’re going through a down period, it’s just so hard to see the up period down the road – and when you’ve had a week like I have, it’s just not fucking possible to see past survival mode.

Saturday, October 22 – I noticed that I missed several calls from the office. I didn’t return them, because, well it’s Saturday. The phone rang again, and I answered it, with a purposely annoyed tone. Christian from work asks me what happened to Gary (Gary is my boss), and I ask him what he’s talking about. He tells me that he heard that he just heard that Gary’s handyman found him collapsed on the floor at his house, and that he’s now in the hospital. I call Gary’s cell – no answer. I call Mariano, the handyman. He tells me that the hospital just called him, and that Gary se murio. Gary died. He fucking died. He was 47 years old, and he just died. I had to go to the house and assure the police that Mariano did indeed work for Gary, and that it was ok for him to have been in the house. Gary’s parents were on vacation in Boston. His mother called me to find out what was happening. I had to explain, as best I could, to his mother what happened.

Sunday, October 23 – I spent most of the day walking around numbly, and not preparing for the hurricane that’s coming.

Monday, October 24 – At 6 in the morning the roar of the hurricane woke us up. The windows were shaking and buckling and the power went out. From our window, I could see huge trees being ripped to shreds and satellite dishes and roof tiles smashing into the building next door. I realized that this hurricane was like nothing I had ever seen before. We sat nervously for hours listening to the howl and destruction outside. After it passed, Rodrigo and I took a walk around the neighborhood to assess the damage. Fucking unreal. Nearly every tree was just shredded, huge cement utility poles were just lying in the street and a van had been flipped upside down onto a car. We took a turn onto Euclid Avenue to check on my car. I had parked away from all trees and signs, just in case. What I had not calculated was the roof of the synagogue on the corner flying at 100 mph into the side of my car. The entire side of my car was completely smashed in. It looks like two buffalos rammed into it full force. The nicest touch, though, has to be the roofing tar all over my car. Um, yeah.

Tuesday, October 25 – It’s pretty amazing how quickly society breaks down without electricity or water. The whole scene turned into Mad Max Beyond South Beach – no lights, downed power lines and trees blocking all the roads and sidewalks and tribes of unshowered people just roaming around with flashlights. I forgot how dark it can be at night. The stars were beautiful. Cell phone batteries died.

Wednesday, October 26 – After living on potato chips and bananas for 2 days, we are deeply grateful that the café where I used to work (and Rodrigo still works) has food. I’m still trying to get a footing on what the fuck just happened. Everyone was just migrating around from friend’s apartment to friend’s apartment looking for something, anything, to do.

Thursday, October 27 – We got water again, but of course it’s cold. Cold showers suck ass, but I would have taken a dip in the Antarctic Sea at that point. Thursday night we got power back. So thankful that I live in the tourist area.

Friday, October 28 – I spent most of the day having “off the record” conversations with Gary’s family, friends and clients. It seems that Gary didn’t have a will, or even life insurance, even though he had literally millions of dollars worth of real estate deals in process. I have never really posted much about work, but as it turns out, I am the one who has all the information that everyone needs. I have all the passwords and account information. I’m the one who knew just about everything about his life. So, now I am the one being placed squarely in the middle of this entire mess – though I no longer have a job. Gary was the company. Without Gary, there is no company. Without Gary, I am completely unemployed. But, of course, that doesn’t matter at all to all the folks who want to “protect their interests.”

Saturday, October 29 – My biological mother, whom I just met a few years ago and have a still uncomfortable relationship with, comes to visit to celebrate her birthday.

Sunday, October 30 – I attended the memorial services for Gary. It didn’t offer the closure I had hoped it would. There was no viewing, because the morgue didn’t have power and they had to cremate his body. Um yeah.

Monday, October 31 – Rodrigo and friends dressed up for Halloween and we walked around Lincoln Road, watching the drag queens frolic – it is their night after all. I’ve rarely felt so miserable. Afterwards, Rodrigo, my partner of nearly 4 years, and who’s been weirdly distant tells me that he feels like things between us aren’t so good right now. Our conversation is interrupted by friends coming over.

I know things get always get better, and blah blah blah. But, fuck, I’m so not in a good place right now. I usually am a pretty chipper guy. Really. Ask anyone.

3 comments:

Valerie - Riding Solo said...

Grief, carless, jobless, food short and water cold, hurricane, and in the middle of their family crisis and geeze, I'll bet you need a drink or some good ol' valium, you poor guy!

Glad to have you back, in whatever condition.

My sis is in Miami and my niece is in Homestead and works in Key West. It's been a bash and a half down there, they tell me.

VegasGustan said...

My thoughts and prayers are with you. I know you and I have some different views on the above, but I will still do it. I really hope things look up.

Joe said...

just reminiscing