Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Debbie - Part VIII

aka, Part the last
  • A few months after the move to Falls Church, Debbie and I split, this time permanently. My father began referring to her as "my former future daughter-in-law," or "former future" for short. But she and I remained friends, as did she and my dad. They wrote each other and once in a blue moon visited with each other. She and I wrote, telephoned, and later emailed, and she even returned to Falls Church for a couple of visits.

  • On her first visit I told her that she was to do absolutely nothing regarding the state of the apartment - no moving things, no cleaning, no nothing. After a couple of days, as she prepared to leave, she said, "You know, there's something to be said for not emptying an ashtray every time it has one cigarette in it."

    The evening that she arrived I took her to a restaurant that was new to her, and on the way I had her smoke a little grass, something she hadn't done for several months. It really got to her.

    We arrived at the restaurant and found that it was mobbed. I gave my name to the hostess and Debbie and I went into the bar, miraculously finding an empty booth. She grabbed it and I went to the bar to get drinks. Returning, I sat opposite her and we contentedly sipped away.

    I began chattering about something and she finally said "Don't talk to me." OK, she's stoned. I can live with that.

    But I couldn't. The problem was that I was now stoned too and I kept forgetting that I wasn't supposed to talk. Finally, she leaned across the table toward me and said "Look into my eyes."

    I leaned forward and looked into her eyes and she said "There's nobody *in* there."

  • Her final visit came about because I insisted that she go with me to see John Fogerty perform in Manassas, Virginia. For the first time in many years he was going to do the old stuff, the Creedence Clearwater Revival stuff.

    Fogerty put on a wonderful show for a very appreciative audience, an audience ranging in age from perhaps eight years old to octogenarians. But as good as Fogerty was, the drummer, Kenny Aronoff, nearly stole the show and at the end had to take several bows to standing ovations. If you ever get a chance to see him, grab it.

  • Eventually I moved back to Illinois. Debbie and I stayed in touch, both by email and telephone. From one of our very last phone conversations, circa 2001:

    Donnie: "When I look at you I see you as you were in 1969."

    Debbie, after a brief pause: "I'll be right out."

  • Debbie remarried and for a while our emails continued, but at some point she and her husband moved to Maine, she changed her ISP, and my emails apparently started falling into a black hole somewhere. Wherever she is, I wish her well.

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