When I was 19 I had never flown on a plane and never owned a color tv. I couldn’t drive and I had no money but I got the idea to go on a cross-country trip. I wanted to see this beautiful land and be like Easy Rider. I wanted have the wind blowing in my hair, cool and free. I also had a secret motive to get to los angeles to hook up with Guillermo, a guy I was crazy about who spoke with a Spanish accent and looked like a young Harvey Keitel. I had it bad over this guy.
I can’t remember who I loved first Harvey or Guillermo. All I know is that they looked like each other and I would go to Thalia to see weird Keitel films like The Duelist just to feel love sick at the sight of the guy. My favorite film of all time was, very rare at that time, Who’s That Knocking at My Door. The gun scene was brilliant, still is. I could not get enough.
Guillermo had already broken my heart, which I wrote about last week, http://hollyramoswrites.blogspot.com/2015/06/the-kind-of-crazy-that-i-was.html but I was in way too deep and not ready to let go of the idea of him yet. The thing is, Guillermo was a charmer, and I was not hip yet to the destructive power of the drug of charm. When he was with me he made me feel like the most important person in the world. He said things to me with his accent that made me swoon. Once we ate doughnuts together and he told me my skin was like peaches in his broken English and I almost lost my mind and told my friends about it, savoring every word.
Let me interrupt this story by saying that at 19 I was at a really low point in my life, headed towards the bottom. Things were bad. It was before I learned how to take control of life and flourish. All I can say is thank you 19 year old Holly for surviving so that I could become who I am now. And now please laugh with me because tragedy plus time equals comedy….
Anyway, I found out that Guillermo was going to be in Los Angels and I wanted to “accidentally” run into him there. Ah, to be young and out of my mind and have the time and energy for such folly! I called up my best buddy who was living in Minneapolis with her new husband and I proposed the idea of a grand American road trip a la Robert Frank and Dennis Hopper and Peter Fonda. She was down! And she had a car! The part I didn’t tell her was how I was going to run into Guillermo because on some level I was sane enough to know that my plan was crazy and be embarrassed about it.
When I landed in Minneapolis I was disappointed to find out that we were going to spend the night at her apartment preparing for our trip. I had no concept of preparation. Lets just get in the car and drive. I had maybe $200 at the most in my pocket and I figured that would keep me fed and fill the gas tank for the next three weeks. I had no idea about the math, I was just going to make it happen. Lets just get on the road. What else did we need to do?
Luckily my buddy had filled two five gallon ice cream buckets with cooked beans and potato salad. And had a cooler to keep things cold. Her husband had gotten us a special light and an atlas to help us find our way out there. Her in-laws thought it weird that she was taking her vacation with me instead of with him but I knew that our trip was destined. It was never even an issue. I must say she was an awesome friend and partner in crime.
The next three weeks were some of the most amazing times of my life till that point. We swam naked in the Rio Grand and slept in the car on the streets of New Orleans and woke up baking to death in dry river beds in the deserts and slept on mountains in the freezing cold, living on beans and potatoes and10 cent coffees in tiny coffee shops in the middle of nowhere, all to a great James Brown, The stooges, and Bob Dylan sound track.
Ultimately, I did “accidentally” run into Guillermo and we did hook up, in a tent in the yard of a friend’s house that we were crashing at. Mission accomplished. In the end Guillermo left me something to remember him by, luckily it was the kind of thing you can cure with an antibiotic.
The next day my friend and I left Los Angeles to head to San Francisco and continue with our great adventure. Thankfully, Guillermo had taken second seat to the pure joy of being alive that I was experiencing as we dashed onward and upward.
Back home in my boring life, without the road to distract and entertain me, I still longed for this Guillermo’s love, VD and all, and walked the streets of the east village looking for him, hoping to “accidentally” run into him yet again. As I wandered down Saint Marks Place madly combing the crowd with my wild desperate eyes, a homeless man spotted me and asked me dead on “WHAT THE FUCK ARE YOU LOKING FOR?” How embarrassing! Right then and there I knew that I was in trouble and needed to stop my obsession and I did. I let Guillermo go.
Years later I ran into Guillermo and he hit on me and all I could see was this regular guy. Thankfully I was light years away from my former self.
That is why we work on ourselves, people. Outgrow your pain. Love yourself.
(part of this story appeared in my original blog, which got disappeared when i was in court. thanks for reading)