MY STORY 90's to 2000's

Written by Captain Mary on Saturday, August 27, 2011

Still living in Key Largo, on the sailboat alone. I found a friend who was kind enough to hide my boat behind his house on a little canal. I was tiring of the live aboard life and moved into a little apartment. I was not alone for long, the man I kicked off the boat, continued to look for me and with the help of his girlfriend's car he located my boat, by driving down every single street. He waited and waited until I showed up there to check on the boat. He begged to be forgiven and said that "Things would be different". Can you believe I actually bought that story. So, I let him move back on the boat. He though we would be together again, I didn't mention to him that I was no longer living on the boat, that I had my own apartment. He stayed on the boat, just waiting for me to come home. He finally found me again at my job. He seemed to want forgiveness, but the relationship was damaged to say the least. We worked together as a couple and moved into another place on the water after getting kicked out of my apartment because of his dog, who trashed the place. The dog was suppose to be a replacement for "Charm" my beautiful springer spaniel, but it was nothing but a nightmare. This dog broke everything, and escaped from the apartment to find me, crossing the highway to do it. I had to give the little guy credit, he was determined.
Now living in a little efficiency on the bay, it was a great view, with no one to bother me. Except that dog, he broke everything in the new apartment. I can't say what happened to him after that, I just don't remember. Things were going great, my boyfriend was working and the money made life so much easier. Things were good, so we moved again, to a place on the water where I bought a little power boat, called the "Little C". Everyday after work we would go out with friends and the kids, who were there a lot now, we would water ski, swim, fish and just have a great time. I thought things were great, I was happy, my daughter had moved back to live with me and I enjoyed her there. My boyfriend didn't exactly care for my daughter and was constantly giving her a hard time. As far as priorities go, the daughter and the son are #1, not the cheating boyfriend.
Life was great, worked on the water, played on the water, everything was again perfect. Too bad it never lasts. Out of a job again, the boyfriend and I begin fighting constantly, I was tired of carrying the load. It just didn't seem worth it. Our arguments got more violent, I thought that he might give me a punch or two. Well, now I already learned this lesson, no one, I mean no one was going to lay a finger on me again. He was sharpening the fishing knives when he went into a rage and punched the wall, I just figured I was next. As he began to approach me I grabbed one of the knives and began swinging it. If your wondering what happened after that, I got a nice slice in. It just seems funny that when men get hurt, they turn into big babies, and he called me crazy and left the house for awhile. Never did he try that again, and things calmed down a bit. I had to get a second job to pick up the slack and pay his way, once again.
I came home one day and saw him cleaning sheets, I was too tired for confrontations at that point, so I let it go, what guy cleans sheets, come on!
My sister called me and said she had stopped by and saw a girl and my boyfriend going out on my boat. Now that is crossing the line! Still not in the mood for confrontation I let it go, but finally he pushed one of my buttons while I was driving down the road. I got so angry that I pulled the car over and told him to get out. I don't know what came over me, but when he walked in front of the car, I put it in drive and hit him. I felt good, I didn't kill him or anything like that. I do think that I got my message across. Shortly after that I found out that the girl was one of my married friends, so I threw him out. I don't know why, but I was devastated. I cried and cried, I just thought that my fun lifestyle was over and I was just tired of all the failed relationships. Seven years together and now time to start over again. The first thing I had to do was move again, so he couldn't find me. On my road to recovery I thought I would have to do something radical, so I went sky-diving. It somehow gave me a new prospective, my daughter floated down from the sky right after me.
My daughter and I got a great little place together, further down the keys. I began dating and not worrying about relationships, just having fun and living the Keys life. Now working at Chica Lodge in Islamorada as a scuba instructor making the big bucks. Lots of money to do what I wanted. Which, of course, that meant I was going to Bimini, Bahamas every few weeks. Living in the Keys and going to the Bahamas, almost where I want to be. My son was working summers at the lodge and having a great time too. It was nice to have my kids with me and enjoying the fun in the sun along side me.
The whole dive staff took off once to go with us to Bimini, we went diving and swimming with wild dolphins. Drinking and getting stupid, no problems!
Work was great and I decided that I would like to become a boat Captain. I went to Sea School and studied, day and night, while collecting documentation for my license. The boat captain at the dive shop where I worked would let me practice driving the boat when we had dive trips, so that I could get the experience. I thought it would be great to stop messing with customers, pulling up anchors and just enjoy the prestige of being "The Captain". I went down to the Coast Guard station and took my test, failing the first test by 2 questions. I took my re-test and passed, February 16th 1993, the same day I operated my first charter as a real captain. I was so pleased at my accomplishment. I was free and now had a way to earn more money. But things weren't so perfect at work. I had always got along with the boss, he was a great man, he could invent just about anything. He spent most of his time working with the parasail boat, but almost everyday he would invite the staff for an after work drink. His wife began to treat me with disdain, I didn't understand it and tried to talk with her. It didn't get me anywhere, she thought that I wanted her husband, he was a great guy, but he was and would always be just a good friend. Words were passed back and forth and I no longer worked there.
I didn't worry, I started working as an independent, scuba instructor slash captain. When the season was good I was making tons of money. I had another job working at a restaurant for the off season. It gave me plenty of time to play on my boat. I was out with my daughter and friends constantly, probably a little everyday. Things were once again good.
Then the stalking began. The X that I thought I was finally finished with, begins to start calling. He was still living in the Keys with his new girlfriend, who was waiting for her divorce to be final. I didn't know what to think about his calls. I continued my life and went out on several dates, once while sitting at a restaurant with my date I saw my X looking through the window of the restaurant. I excused myself for a minute, not letting my date know what was going on, and went to talk to the X. I could tell that he wasn't exactly happy about his decision, but I sent him away and continued my evening. It didn't end though, he would show up at my home, when he knew I was there alone. How he found me I don't know, he should have been a detective.
I couldn't help thinking that this would be a great opportunity to get my revenge. I began an affair with him, we would get together at odd times, while his girlfriend was at work. I think she suspected something, which was my plan after all. The both of them moved to Miami, perhaps his girlfriend, who was now his wife thought that would help keep him away from me. I didn't care one way or another, I only had the affair to exact my revenge and execute what I call "Squatters Rights". I considered this arrangement to be perfect, I dated who I wanted and had the best of the man that I no longer had to support. It was all going so well, until his wife began calling my house every time he was over my place. It got annoying and yet satisfying. I would just hand the phone over to him. He was so busted and I didn't care.
Working as a freelance captain, I got a pretty steady position driving a boat in N. Key Largo at a dive center. I worked mostly from the dock, but every other week was pay day. I got a call from the dive shop, from one of the other captains, he told me that my X's wife had been working at the same place as me, just waiting for a confrontation. I didn't see any reason to disappoint her, and I went to the dive shop for that confrontation. Words were exchanged and the crew disappeared to the back room to ease drop. All I know is that she never showed up again in the Keys. The affair didn't end there, like she had hoped. Now she was very hormonal, since she was pregnant, and my ultimate revenge was when she was having their son and he was in my bed when she called. The affair continued and he would even bring his new baby to meet with me.
I had some short term relationships, but nothing lasted because they would always run into my stalker. I decided that I was going to look for another place to live. My daughter had moved to Orlando and she said that it was great fun. So, I left my apartment with some friends while I took a look at the Orlando scene. I decided that I would move. Returning home to pack up and sign the lease over to the guys staying at my house, ending my now miserable existence in the Keys. The quality of men in great decline.
I got a great apartment, I had money in the bank, but it wouldn't last forever. I looked for work, which was almost impossible. Had to switch occupations at that point and enter the fascinating restaurant industry. I missed the Keys so much, I would go there almost every weekend. Still having some contact with my stalker. I think our last meeting was in a town near Orlando where my stalker was now living, is that just a coincidence, who knows.
I enjoyed the night life of Orlando, and met this great guy. He was 6'5" and 12 years younger. We seemed to really hit it off. He was a great guy and had a job. My daughter liked him and told me that I had to change my ways. I knew exactly what she meant, no more cheating. So, I took her advice and could focus more on the relationship at hand. We dated for a about 6 months, and I was ready to make a move. I was an expert at moving by now. He wanted to be closer to his family, so we moved now to Bonita Beach on the West Coast of Florida. It was in the middle between my kids and beloved Keys.
There it was moving day, the truck pulled out front of our cute little apartment near the water, boyfriend off at work that he secured before we moved. I was walking boxes to the apartment when a frantic little old lady stops me. She told me that her boyfriend, which is my next door neighbor, was not answering any of her calls. She wanted me to go inside her boyfriends apartment to see if he was home. I couldn't help feeling bad for her, she was in such a panic. She handed me her key, I opened the door and she stayed behind me. I looked around the apartment and didn't see him, so I went toward the bedroom and saw him laying in the bed. He appeared to be sleeping, I just stood there, not knowing exactly what to do. The little old lady, pushed me toward him and told me to shake him, since he wasn't answering our shouts. I approached him and shook him, he was stiff and his arms rose into the air as I moved him. Behind me the little old lady screamed and became hysterical. I don't know this lady but I didn't want another death on my hands. I had to make the phone calls to the fire department and police and even had to call her family members. With all the commotion the land lady appeared and said that someone else had already died in that apartment, but told me not to worry because no one had died in my apartment. Oh what a relief, ugh! Is this one of those signs that I should not ignore?
My funds beyond depleted, even though I was lucky enough to get a transfer from the Orlando restaurant to the Ft. Myers one. The hours were not enough, so I got another restaurant job, different shifts. Still had time for recreation some how. I was never afraid of work, always did what I had to.
Life was fun, the beach close by, it was different, but something was missing. I had somehow lost myself. I felt isolated and only had friends while at work. It was time to find myself, such a corney concept, but it is true. It was time to do something with adventure.  
The plans now set in motion to hike the Appalachian Trail. I have lived in flat Florida almost all my life and now going to test my stamina in the mountains. We did practice runs, and hiked with full backpacks. Began planning and doing research. Boxing up food drops and making the final plans, stuff in storage, contact information and itinerary. It was time to leave, we made our way after finalizing plans with my parents, to get to friends in Georgia, where they would drive us to the trail head in Amicalola Falls, Georgia. Pictures of Appalachian Adventure. Here among the mountains is where I celebrated my 40th birthday.
The whole story of the adventure is far too long to begin here, all I can say is that I found myself indeed. I gained much more than confidence and self respect. I found my limitations, which was my knees, and this is what ended my adventure on the trail, only after about 600 miles of hiking. Not ready to return to Florida I worked on a farm in Long Island, which was hard work and cold. When I looked out the window one morning and saw snow, I knew it was time to return home, which was where? The only thing I will miss is fishing for Blue Fish on the shore line and eating fresh vegatables off the vine.
Returning to Florida, awaiting the birth of my new grandchild, we stayed at my parents house while looking for a place to live. My mother let me know that this man that I had spent so much time with was not her favorite, she told me that he was a user. I had not really noticed at that time, but what she said stuck in my head and made me more observant. There was a lot of bad feelings at my parents home and he went to Naples to be with his family while we were looking for a place to live.
Finally found an apartment within our budget, I was re-hired at my old restarant job. I was really focused and worked hard to get some small promotions. I really went back to work to get insurance to fix my knee. Another surgery under my belt. I continued work and had become a trainer for francise operators. I trained brothers who were opening their own store in Naples. They were so impressed with me that they recruited me and a couple of my friends to troubleshoot and get the new store running smooth. I was finally in managemnt, thinking I would have to work less on the line, but what a mistake that was. I was working and on call all the time, but the money was great. I was doing so well that I was ready to buy another boat. My boyfriend was working at a marina at the time and I found a boat that I loved. I named her the "IN 2 DEEP". That was the beginning of trouble in paradise once again. My boyfriend at the time thought it would be just fine to lend it out, when I wasn't around. Mistake! That wasn't the only problem we had. I think once I turned 40 that things between us had began to fall apart. I didn't know about it, but later found out that he could no longer endure our age differences. This was the last time that I wanted to hear, "I would never marry you anyway". Like, I was good enough for all the other benifts. It was mutual and ended after 4 years and many miles. No regrets, I got something out of the realtionship and learned more lessons. I never wanted to get in his way of finding what he always said was a majical moment between two people. It sounded like a fairy tale to me. We remained friends and I am happy to say that this year he will be married to his soul mate.
The first order of business was to get the boat to Miami, where my brother became my partner in the boat. It was a very interesting trip across the west coast of Florida. Then my brother brought his trailer and we packed up my apartment and moved to his house. Not without leaving my mattress in the middle of the road outside of the apartment complex. We laughed so hard when it flew off the trailer, we didn't go back for it.
My brother and I were both single and really enjoyed our life together, my most recent X would visit and then it was when I realized that what my mother had told me about him being a user was very true. I don't think he even knew it, but now he has made a living out of it. Hey, why not! Whatever works!
I got back in touch with my best friend for life, he was so happy to see me, but now a different man. He was married, but we had more than sex together. I asked if I could hang out and meet some friends. He said that he had a great guy that could use a companion too. I wasn't looking for anything serious, since I just broke up with the other guy a matter of a month earlier.
This new guy, was different, he was my age, imagine that, but the younger guy thing wasn't working so the only thing to do was to try something different. We began a casual relationship, coffee dates, stock car races, after all he was seeing someone else anyway. A really fun guy, we would take motorcycle trips all over the place, believe me it was hard to get back on one, since my accident. But Steve drove different, he believed that if you drive like your invisible you will survivie. I began to trust him like no other, with my life. I still felt like I was cursed though, when it came to relationships.
In the meantime, my brother and I went out on the boat, with friends, every week until we finally killed the engine on the boat. But, we had plenty of fish in the box all the time. I was becoming more distracted with Steve. My parents came for a visit and I introduced my parents to Steve. Steve was around all the time, even though we had only dating about a month or two. The guys went outside to do guy things, which left me and my mother to talking. She told me that she liked Steve, which was one of the biggest surprises of my life. My mother never liked anyone I was dating. I told her that I didn't have much hope and that I had raised my standards far too high to comprimise any longer. I enjoyed being roommates with my brother far too much to be concerned. My mother looked down at my finger and noticed that I was wearing my grandmothers old wedding ring. She pointed at the ring and told me the reason I couldn't find love was because of the ring, "It is cursed", she told me. She went on to tell me the story of the marriage between her mother and father and how it was arranged. I was so moved by the story that I took off the ring. I had been wearing the ring since my last divorce, maybe there was something to what she had to say.
I put the ring away and didn't give it a thought, until Steve asked me to marry him a few days later. I accepted his proposal, since it was made for no other reason than love. This fairy tale that I thought was ridiculous had happened to me. I was so excited that I called my X to tell him, thought he should know, since I gave him such a hard time about finding soul mates. He was really hurt, because we had just broken up and now I would be married less than 3 months later.
First order of business was to find a place to live, and I was determined that we start new and fresh. I wasn't moving in his trailer, did that already. House shopping was next, we found a home only after seeing tons of houses, this one seem to fit, didn't need any work to move in. The only problem was that we couldn't move in until 8 months after closing. We waited it out at my brothers house, which put a clink in our relationsip, but it would never be ruined by an outsider.
Moved in our new house just before Thanksgiving 1998, and the whole family was there for the celebration. I just couldn't bear to get a job working for someone else, so I took over my sister-in-laws cleaning business. Which is still paying the bills to this day. We lived a comfortable life. Two peas in a pod.
One day while in the back yard I was looking at my boat, with tears in my eyes, because I didn't have a working engine. It was something that gave me that great feeling and Steve had always wanted to go boating. It was one of those dreams that he wanted to fulfill. He grabbed me by the arm and put me in the car, without a word he took me to the marine store and purchased an engine for the boat. From that day on we were out on the boat every single week. We loaded up the boat with friends and fish. Steve told me that he never had so much fun as when we were out on the boat. We began making trips to Bimini, even would kidnap our guests and just drive there to have a beer. Sometimes we would spend the night, it was a dream, everybody in Bimini knew us by name. All of the time thinking I have finally found the man of my dreams. He loved everything I did, our only problem was his X, but she lived far enough away not to bother us too much. The begining of a new millenium upon us. Life was just perfect once again. I can't think of a time that I was happier in a relationship. Not a care in the world, I had everything I wanted, supplied by my wonderful husband.

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  1. 1 comments: Responses to “ MY STORY 90's to 2000's ”

  2. By linda on September 7, 2011 at 1:41 AM

    c'mon if ur gonna tell the story at least get it right mary!andy left you after thanksgiving and we married 2 months later and he was in the delivery room the day our son was born i have pics to prove that ! i got everything you ever wanted from andy in a matter of months his baby and a wedding ring ! my x took you skydiving and you ran out of the dive shop crying !yeah he cheated but i understood he had to grow up with me and you know what 20 yrs later he has worked his ass off for our family he's my best catch!as for changing the sheets we never did it in your bed,just your couch ,livingroom floor and best of all your boat several times!why did'nt you add how he helped you get off crack !i told him about your blog he thinks ur pathedic! if you're gonna tell the story get it right ! lmao !!!!