Monday, July 24, 2006

Eastchester Road (Part 2 of 2)

(Continued from Part 1).

The house on Eastchester Road was more than just a place to live, it was the epicenter of my indoctrination into a new and exciting world.
Owen and Rick exposed me to things a small-town Texan would normally not experience so early in life. Beer soaked bar floors were replaced with plush red velvet carpet. Glenlivet scotch trumped Rolling Rock. Performances at Carnegie Hall and Lincoln Center felled football games and keggers.

Eastchester Road was also a place of memorable "firsts." It was the first place I lived without support from my parents. The first place I had my own bathroom. The first place I felt truly accepted as a gay man. The first place I watched gay porn. The first place I had a boyfriend sleep over. The first place I held a friend's hand after a diagnosis with HIV. The first place I drank Brandy and actually enjoyed it. The first place I drove a Volvo. The first place I called "home" since I left Texas. Memories there are rich and enduring.

Unfortunately, life at Eastchester Road became the victim of enmeshment and unrequited love. Things became tense in the house and the air was thick with emotion. I walked on tip-toes, literally. Doors began to slam, tears were shed. We each retreated from each other in our own ways--one in a bottle, the other in work. Me, I started graduate school. The trio was soon dissolved. I've neither seen or spoken to them in over 12 years.

I often regret the loss of two of my mentors, my friends. But I have no desire to wish things different. My harborage with Owen and Rick, albeit brief, had the single most profound impact on my life as any other event. I will always cherish my social and cultural alma mater. It still sits high atop the hill in my heart.


At 1:44 PM, Blogger Sorted Lives said...

What a touching story. Thank you for sharing. I am sure not a day goes by that you don't think about a day/event on Eastchester Rd.

At 3:31 PM, Blogger JoeL said...

Very touching.

It's good to see that people helped you live your life.

Will we know what happened next?

How did you leave?


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