Footprints on My Heart

The best girlfriend I ever had was a buyer named Ron.  Ron was my dear friend, my soul mate for about 10 years.  He was gay, I wasn’t.  I sold ejection seat sensors for the F-16 ACES II ejection seats.  Ron was the buyer for the company that made those seats.  He got me a yellow “eject” handle from the F-16 scrap bin for my RX7.  I used it to threaten my son’s teenage friends with a trip through the moon roof.  They all thought I was “real cool.”footprints

I loved him so much I threw a birthday party for him January 1983.  He showed up in chaps.   Thank God he was wearing jeans underneath.  Joey asked him if he was cold.  He laughed.  When I went to his house we would go shopping for material for curtains, which he would then sew, calling me to ask what colors went with what.

He was 6’4″, blond, stunningly gorgeous, had abs no one would believe, and came to my office wearing beige slacks (with a pressed fold), a hot pink golf shirt, a white jacket, loafers no socks.  I’m 4’11” and everyone in the building thought he was madly in love with me.  One could only dream.  He played everything to the hilt, driving his aqua Cadillac convertible with white leather seats down Hollywood Blvd.   He called me “Babe” and “Dear” during a time when everyone minded, but me.

He called screaming everyday at 9 am and 1 pm sharp.  I would lay the phone on my desk speaker side up and let him scream for 30 minutes.  The secretary and I would look at each other and howl silently.  We were always late on parts.  He would drive from Burbank to Torrance and scream at all the big wig vice presidents.  My boss would hand me $400 in cash and tell me to get him out of building.  “Take him to lunch, anywhere he wants to go.”  We would leave in my RX7, go to Redondo Beach, and wait till we crossed 190th Street to start laughing.  Lunch was three hours of gossip and stories – mostly whom he picked up on Hollywood Blvd in the aqua Caddy.  It was 1982 and the aids virus was only a whisper in certain circles.  What did I know?  I didn’t travel in those circles.

If I could get a redo a year it would be 1992.  It was not a good year for me on any level – personally or professionally.  He died that spring of complications from the aids virus.  I remember so many tiny details of the ten years we were best friends I often surprise myself.

After the funeral I sent his Mother a Flavia card that read “Some people come into our lives and quickly go, some stay for a while, leave footprints on our heart, and we are never ever the same.”

 

All rights reserved.  ©2009 by Sara Fryd

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7 thoughts on “Footprints on My Heart

  1. An amazing, powerful story. You always managed to find the chords which lead directly to the heart and tug them. We all need a friend like this.

  2. Sorry for your loss Sara, but also glad you experienced those 10 years of bliss. Clearly Ron is still making his presence felt in your life…perhaps a sign that your friendship journey will never really end…

  3. How lucky we are when we realize what we have had and that we get to keep the memories we choose. It’s those relationships when we talk over each other with the excitement of sharing or just sit next to each other in silence. Sounds like Ron left a big footprint. 🙂

  4. What a touching story, Sara. We all should have friends that touch our lives, our souls, our hearts like Ron did yours. You are richer for knowing him and we are richer for reading your story. Thank you for sharing!

  5. What grace to know such a fun, loving soul! I worked at Chicken Soup Brigade in Seattle (now Lifelong Aids Alliance) and enjoyed my time there so much (though it took me leaving that job for another to realize it). My favorite memories:

    Gay Bingo where the Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence would often show up and turn the event into a SUPER event… 😆

    Slipping out of the office when the WTO was downtown causing all sorts of mayhem… including the liberal use of pepperspray we barely avoided.

    Getting into a yelling match with the warehouse guy (the only straight guy!) and feeling like crap afterwards…

    Receiving lovely art from one of my Hispanic clients as a gift just because he appreciated me (his caseworker).

    –The gay community has some of the most loving, fun, kind people I’ve ever known. Thank you Sara for helping me remember them.

  6. Amazing and beautiful Sara. If everyone could be so lucky to be blessed with having someone in their lives and have an impact like that. Even if it is only for a short time, it’s that time that helps make us better for having experienced them.

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