Well, it is time to tell you all about Peter. I met him on the internet and he wrote wonderful emails.
"I'm 56 but young at heart. I feel like I'm 25 and enjoy life everyday to its fullest. Physically, I'm 6'1" and 215. I'm college educated and work in the computer industry. Old fashioned in some things, but I'm always trying new things. Ive flown airplanes as well as jumped out of them. I still believe that a man's word is his bond.
Love to take walks on the beach - sunset is a wonderful time- even more wonderful when you can share it with someone special. I'm also the eternal optimist, my wine glass is half full!"
Our first year was amazing but after four years I can tell you that the wine turned to straight vodka on the sly. However he did become my best buddy and my soulmate as he was born on the same day as my Viet Vet fellow. The three of us had controling mothers altho theirs sounded much worse than mine. I finally agreed to meet Peter at the dance pavilion down by Seaport Village here in San Diego. Peter and I melted into each others arms and we took a long walk along the waterfront and had a kiss under this statue.
We walked back to the California Seaside grill and ate looking out at the water. He had size twelve shoes which always turns me on and we got along so well. We said good bye and planned to meet five days later. However in two days we found ourselves at Target looking for a vacumn cleaner and we had a dynamite kiss in the parking lot and another one on the escalator. When we got back in front of his apartment in my truck I asked him if he needed help hauling the big box upstairs and of course he did. We didn't unpack the box but we sat on his sofa and let the sparks fly. We were definitely compatible.
He called me daily when he was on his lunch break and when he was walking home. He didn't have a car. He lived right in the city and used a flex car when he had to go on longer drives. I thought he was very eco conscious. I also thought it was odd that he didn't have much stuff in his apartment. Just the basics. When we met for the third time two days later and we were laying in bed feeling very satisfied. He told me his story.
He had been married for eighteen years and had one daughter. He had been extremely wealthy and had his own plane. But when he lost his business his wife divorced him and he married another lady. She had to have neck surgery and there was no money for that. So he decided to rob some banks. He robbed eight banks with no gun, just a note and a smile. His wife's sister saw him on Crime Stoppers and turned him in. He spent six years in Federal Prison and was just in the process of being in the half way house and getting his own apartment because he had found a great job. Now I knew why he didn't have much stuff.
I thought about all this for 24 hours and I went back. I think most people would not have done that. I had been dating for eight years after my divorce from a 25 year marriage. I was looking for a bed to share and Peter provided that and breakfast too. We became inseparable. He would visit me at the sorority where I lived as the house director and we went on magical walks on many of the San Diego beaches. On our first beach day we went to three beaches and ended up in Del Mar watching the sunset and dancing in the sand. We loved running right into the waves and letting them beat us all around and then swimming out into the deep green water beyond the waves. I had never had someone who would do that with me and it was exhilarating. We spread our blanket on the sand and talked and relaxed into a friendship that is still very special even after all we have been through. The night he got the final release from the half way house we drove to the Coronado Beach and walked to the waters edge at midnight.
He told me about the time he was sitting with his wife with the bad neck (she got the surgery) on the rocks by Coronado beach in the evening and they were surrounded by five tough guys. They were closing in for a robbery and Peter pulled his gun out of his coat. They took off. She thought Peter was her hero and he was in many ways. He has had four marriages with the other two right out of college and only lasting a short time. He looks like a hero. Big broad shoulders and blue eyes, German and Polish while I am German and English. He is very cuddly and because of the abuse by his mother he is hungry for love but at the same time he pushes it away with behavior that rebels against a woman's control.
Peter had been born in Germany. His mother was Polish and had been quite wealthy. However during World War II her family was reduced to stealing potatoes from the neighbors garden to survive and when she married Peter's father they got on one of the last ships bound for America. They settled in Michigan and she forced Peter to wear Lederhosen to school. He says that is when he learned to fight bullies. He got all A's and one B in English in the third grade which was pretty good considering he didn't speak a word of English when he started that year. His mother told him that the one B was unacceptable. That is when he began to fight her for his self esteem and I can't blame him.
We found the apartment of our dreams to move into right next to that first little sparse love nest. I said good bye to the sorority and one girl said "Your boyfriend is hot!". His job was working out well and in the next three years he made three million dollars for the company. He sold hard drives and helped the company move into a fancy new building. However that meant he had to commute on the freeway and the stress increased. I began to notice that he was having low blood sugar attacks and he started on pills for that. The pills made him gain over forty pounds even tho we were eating small healthy meals. He had high blood pressure and had pills for that. We cut out drinking and that was easy for me but not for him. He would go for long periods of no alcohol but then I would find that he had hidden a bottle and was drinking straight vodka out of a tumbler at his desk. We missed our San Diego Sunset cocktails in the evenings. That had been such a wonderful invention. Rum and Pineapple juice with a maraschino cherry as the sun.
Peter loved to read science fiction and was reading our own David Brin's book EARTH at the hospital. There are two chairs out in our garden now side by side where we spent many hours with our feet entwined reading. He made it through prison by reading and teaching GED classes. He also helped with the computers. No internet access tho. He was a wheeler dealer and made a good living in prison and many friends among the guards and inmates. He also dealt efficiently with the trouble makers and wanted to kill a man named 'Whitie' who was terrorizing the place. However since he only had three months left until he was released he got himself thrown into solitaire for that time and managed to avoid trouble with that fellow. He still talks about him and notes that his release time has increased to forty years from now. Peter loved cop shows and seeing the bad guys get their due. NCIS was his favorite.
There were some distressing incidents in those three years. He would have low blood sugar attacks and once fell into the glass coffee table. He would get so he couldn't breathe or swallow and I had to slip a glucose tablet into his mouth to bring him back. He would stagger like he was drunk and his boss began to think he was drinking on the job. We told him that the diabetes was taking a toll on Peter and it was true. Peter used to have a Heinekin beer when he came home for lunch but had stopped that. Diabetics can smell sweet like alcohol and the boss was noticing that he sometimes dozed at his desk. But he was good at his job. It was the same type of business that he had made his money with in his heyday. He loved his job.
We went on wonderful vacations. The first one we had to get permission from his parole officer and we went all the way up to San Francisco and then to the Garlic Festival in Gilroy. We camped out in the tall redwood trees and went to wine tastings. We loved going to the Gordon Biersh Brewery on Friday nights and listening to the live music. We still went every weekend and danced at Seaport Village and we took a trip up to Hearst Castle, camping all the way and driving up the windy coastal highway to Monterey. We also took a romantic three day trip to Catalina Island and fell in love with that quaint little place even tho it was misty and off season. He went with me to Alaska and my daughters liked him. He was even good to my mother. We liked to take long rides in the country and explore the little towns around here. The fantastic San Diego Zoo was near our place and we had a yearly membership. Peter loved animals and had a special touch with them.
He likes to tell the story of when he moved into his house in Del Mar just as the subdivision was being built. He was roaming the fields around the house when he came upon a female coyote who had a nail in her foot. He was kneeling by her when her mate came up with a rabbit in his mouth. But he let Peter continue to help the female and Peter went back home and got some antibiotic and other things to help the coyotes. He soon made friends with them and often went walking with them as the female's foot slowly healed. He is fearless and the animals seem to sense that calm.
We were happy and got along so easily. I don't know if I would have liked him before his prison days. He sounded like a rich Republican with a trophy wife. But when I met him he was a liberal Democrat and appreciated my hippy ways. Maybe that is why they don't want felons to vote. They would all be leftists after being in prison.
There was one time that Peter came home from work for lunch and found someone in our backyard who had rolled out his sleeping blanket and was eating his dumpster lunch at our picnic table. Peter told him to leave, now, and the fellow pulled a knife on him. Peter had a broom stick and used to be a karate expert. He laid that fellow flat and duct taped him up and called the Police. Surviving in prison was something that I hoped he could write about someday or maybe I will have to write the stories for him. They are not for the faint of heart. As you can imagine by now I am someone who does not shy away from the tough times of life. I see them as fodder for stories. He walked thru crowds like a bull and I kept telling him he didn't need to do the prison walk anymore.
The best part of Peter's life was the years he spent in Jamacia. He went with the police chief's daughter and loved the music and the doobies. He would have married her but the chief objected to the mixed races. We always played reggae music and loved our Bob Marley wall hanging. Peter and his ex wife had traveled all over the world. He loved the Bahamas and wants his ashes sprinkled there. He and his wife toured Europe after he had sold one of his partnerships and she had been from a big Turkish family so they went there too. Their daughter is all grown up now and wants nothing to do with Peter after he went to prison. They talk on the phone at birthdays but she is just 21 now and sounds confused. I don't blame her.
Peter was driving on the freeway coming back from his job in the new building and the car in front of him was going very slowly on the off ramp. Peter honked and realized that the fellow was talking on his cell phone. When they came to the stop sign the fellow got out of his car and showed Peter his gun. Peter was out of his car too and advanced toward the fellow and kicked the gun out of his hand. Then he flattened him on the ground and put his foot on him while he called the cops. They took the fellow away screaming revenge but the cops were grateful as they knew he was a troublemaker. Peter was the hero yet again.
But that incident took a toll on his health. His boss was gone on an African safari and Peter dragged himself in to keep the company going. He is a computer whiz and saved that place several times. But the second in charge complained that Peter was 'out of it' and when the boss came back he fired Peter. He never gave him a drug test or a bad evaluation and so Peter won the unemployment trial and has a nice income until her retires at 62. We moved out into the country with our wild turkeys in a little mobile home park where we have been so happy. But the health problems still plagued him and so did the vodka.
So there we are. The car he loved so much may have had a faulty excelerator or it may be that his foot stuck when he was on his way to the doctor appointment. The same thing happened before but he only hit a pole. He was in jail for one night and we buried the car the next day. That night he couldn't breathe and in the morning he started coughing up blood. We hated to go to the hospital but sometimes you just have to go. He is now on a breathing ventilator and I am holding his hand. I hope he comes back to our little paradise here with the wild turkeys and the beautiful patio. He is trouble with a capital T but I have never been afraid of trouble. You miss too much of life if you are scared all the time. People are fascinating and our bodies are so tough. Who am I through all of this? I am an artist and a caregiver. I would love to bring him back here, subdued and coherent, so that we can laugh and email across the room to each other again and we can help each other like we have for the last four years. However, I don't want them to keep him alive like a vegetable and I'm trying to be a good advocate for him. I still feel like snuggling with him even thru all the wires in that hospital bed. He never snored and he loved to cuddle alllll night long.