Blue skies ocean’s side sharing unforeseen.
Led on journeys afar… not ready to stop.
Didn’t believe, moved on now forgotten…searching for a sign.
Harley ride, warm Florida nights, wind in our face, silent smiles.
Blue jeans, black shirt, tanned skin, arms wrapped around pressed close.
Dark skies, stars shine white moon on high, Spectre flies by.
Bright white head light, pine trees rise in the distant.
Panhandle asphalt, parallel ocean flowed deeper into night.
Warrior life no longer a threat, more at ease I became.
Becoming closer wanting our time to be true, we’ve fallen… too far behind.
I can’t do the talk. I can’t do a love song like the way it was meant to be. I can’t do everything but I’ll do anything for you. All I do is miss you and the way we used to be. All I do is kiss you through the bars of a rhyme. (Dire Straits)
Jojo was a good strong woman then, she’s only better now. Only once did I watch her cry. Then a second time. A third time too many. The first was not because of me. The others were. I just don’t understand why. Was it when I approached her? Did I do it wrong or was I wrong? Where did I fuck it all up? We didn’t have an argument or yell at each other. It was time pulling us apart from each other. To the point we didn’t say a word.
This is the way I understand things. Just tell me I’m not off in my own mind creating this sense of drive for each other. I felt it. I felt all of it and more and wanted more of it.
On the final night I spent all night writing my last words to Jojo. I left her behind a message telling her not to give up on me. What I couldn’t say to her face, I was forced to write in that letter. It was everything I simply couldn’t say. Telling her that no matter how long it takes to not once ever quit. As I wrote that note, I saw that approaching storm on the damned horizon. I was fucked from the beginning. No matter what happened, I wanted her to know that I had to leave. When I did, when the timing was better, I would find her again. What I could not tell her was how I had to first end the failed marriage I had with her good friend. Little Man’s mother. At no time did Jojo ask me to do anything like that. It was me. All me. At the time of that note, I made my choice to find Jojo again. The pursuit just wasn’t the right time.
The pursuit for Jojo continued through emails after emails month after month. It appeared after each email, I only got worse. Then it became a year, and another year. Jail, hospital after another, six months here, a few there. Before I knew it six, seven and now eight years have passed me by. My son grew older, so did Jojo and myself. However we all grew years apart. The two most important things in my life could not be brought together with me.
After experiencing Jojo the way I did, I wanted to give the same thing back to her. I wanted and still want to share things with her where life is mutual. Where we both give and take from each other without saying a word.
To love is defiance. Go against the grain, opposite of the world around you. Call it being stuck or too focused, I don’t care. It is what it is. She’s on my mind everyday all day. These thoughts are motivating one moment, down right upsetting the next. Meaning I find myself wanting to talk to her again sharing with her the good things in life. Next, I’m realizing how far removed we are from each other, there appears no chance we will reconnect. Regardless, I choose to take this path. It is my decision to want to have feelings for Jojo. More than once I’ve tried to give up, naturally within myself is something that refuses to quit.
Knowing she is not married yet is nothing less than inspiring. There is a chance. A chance for anything in this world. Why so many people have gone off and pursued things in this world that were impossible to others. I knew from the beginning it would be next to impossible to retrieve a new relationship with Jojo. The odds were stacked against me. Had I chosen to stay with her, she would have witnessed me as a married man try to start a life with her. Later, in the worst of times with Jojo, she would have seen me as less of a man lacking loyalty. The effort would have failed.
Tell me not to want her. Tell me to go away, to return to my home and start a new life. I will tell you in return to piss off and take the high road. My intent was to recover remnants of a past life with a purpose to recover my son and build a better life with someone new. Someone who earned my trust and respect. Someone, at the end of the day, I simply fell for.
Had I…ah, the past doesn’t matter much. Only for the lessons learned will the past matter. That’s exactly what I’m trying to convey, is how if I had done anything different, I would have compromised myself and everything I believed in. Going after my son first is, was and will always be the right thing. Had I not done that, I would not be here typing. Instead, I would be dust dissolved in some far off waters or found crumbling in mud within some hidden dump. If a pistol to the temple or dextromethrophane to the kidney did not take me, the great man above would have found a way.
All I can relate her to is … beauty. Yes, beauty is in the eye of the beholder. When you experience Jojo, you will certainly feel the same way. You want to be a part of her and share something with her. She is dynamic, alive and a giving woman who carries herself with confidence. Being so attractive, she’s confidently able to walk everywhere with her head held high.
This woman is that impressive…she would endure rides on the bike for over 12 hours. Not complaining or whining wanting to go home or stop. She wanted to live life to the fullest. To the point, I taught her how to ride the Harley on her own. Watching her learn was amusing and fun. She took control of the bike, let out a shriek scream and went with it. On that abandoned runway, she commanded that 600lb bike and took off pushing through the gears where the transmission begged to be shifted higher and higher.
For now, rarely when I look up do I see women who capture my attention and set off the internal fire of attraction. If they are attractive, then they lack personality, even intelligence and humor. Or, too dramatic, whine even judge others.
I don’t know, they simply are not this woman. The woman I”ve chosen to love, respect and pursue.
Allow me time to collect thoughts. This way I won’t publish less than the best in posts. For now, I’m doing what I said I would do. Let things go and move on.Well I’m here to tell you how that is easier said than done.I’m just going to sit back and enjoy this classic tune from a great 70′s band called Marshall Tucker Band with their song “Can’t you see.”
Listen to the lyrics and try to understand how this is going to be harder then it appears. I will kick back tonight and relax thinking until I sleep.
Allow a man time!
Prepare to Crossover
Falling in love with Jojo came slow yet fast and unexpected. Six months with her on the motorcycle made me regain sanity and peace of mind. Compensating for loss, I chose to overlook how wrong it was. To this day, despite all the shame and despair, I don’t care. She was and is genuine never meaning harm against my failed marriage. She was real. Ever since I look at no women the same, yet waiting for Jojo.”What a wicked thing you say, you never felt this way. What a wicked thing to do, make me fall in love with you.”
Returning to America alone from war in Kandahar, Afghanistan and Iraq found me home without a house and family welcoming me home. Six months remaining in the military. throughout the days and nights, I became resentful of everyone I had worked for. Angry for failing to take care of my family, both accepting responsibility yet blaming others, I became furious at my ex-wife for choosing to leave and putting me in a position I would have to decide on the mission or my family. Angry at her because our marriage was about to fall apart anyway. She took my son with her.
Choosing to get away, I spent my days and nights purposely avoiding work, riding my motorcycle for up to 12-16 hours at a time. I didn’t care, no one else cared.
Riding along the gulf coast of Florida, I met the new Jojo. By accident, unexpectedly, at 16, the new Jojo grew and matured while I was away to welcome me home. To be brief, over those six months we rode together everyday and night…
To read more, please click here: War, PTSD and Metallica Unforgiven 3.
Oceans and lakes. Morning looks a certain way on the water. Gulf of Mexico. The southern experience. No matter if Northwest Florida, Alabama, Mississippi even Louisiana. Sunrise on a new day opens with smells of grasses and pines even salts of the ocean mixed with sounds of life coming alive. Birds flying chirping making sense only to themselves.
Her name was….I called her Jojo.
Looked up to the woman I married, she begged to watch our son. For over seven years watched her grow. Returning home from war, I became a single man and found Jojo a new woman.
Six months with the Emerald Coast to our side we rode the bike hours after hour every day always leading to the nights. The time spent with Jojo felt right The experience of her was remarkably renewed. The motorcycle was new yet felt as if we had ridden for years. With Jojo, once again I became a man. The thing is, I don’t know if she loved me.
Tripped me over spinning off in a direction never expected. Must be trapped in what was then, for now, she wants no more. Why was the thought of finding Jojo so damned possible?
One night, when Jojo boarded the Harley, she threw her leg over the seat and mounted the bike where her jeans raised up revealing her right calf. Without a thought, her leg came down onto the shiny silver exhaust pipe where instantly the pipe seared her skin forever burning Jojo leaving behind a symbol of the rides on her body. To this day I’m not certain what that symbolizes to Jojo, whether those rides were a success or failure.
What I do know is how the choices I made when getting closer to Jojo turned out to be the best decisions I could have made. Had I chosen to grow intimate with her, I would have lost her. How do I show this woman that she is the only woman in the world that matters. I do it by leaving with the intent to return to find her again. I was too young and immature at that time. Yes, I was older than her, yet I was immature and simply not ready. Choosing to stay and grow intimate would have scarred her for life leaving me behind in purgatory. What needed to happen was I had to leave her, then, return, only when I was better prepared and had learned to become a man. My travels had taken me too many places and had seen too many things I couldn’t describe. To the point I had lost track of who I had become. A father, a leader, a husband, a lover or nothing?
Looking back, I believe it took a man to make the choice I made. It would take me seven years to learn I was a good man and not what I feared deep within. Jojo was the reason I made those choices, next to little man, she became my reason for existence. The time spent with Jojo became my scar burned deep within my heart teaching me how love of any kind within our short life should never be taken for granted.
Little Man was only seven when I left Florida. He was born and raised in the gulf coast to become independent, curious and adventurous. Little Man’s mother and I were Air Force stationed at a local military base, Hurlburt Field Air Force Base. Rarely home, I was always on the road operating with the teams, while his mother rotated on TDY trips supporting the mission as a professional contracting officer. He was born with the mission emphasized and would grow with it prioritized.
While either of his parents were away, his next door neighbor, Jojo, would come over to care for him. No matter what day of the week or night, Jojo was there to fill in for either his mom or Dad. Jojo brought consistency when there was none. A bridge when the tides were unsteady and the times became unpredictable, the house settled when Jojo filled in. For Travis, while he lived in Florida, that meant Jojo became a source for peace.
No matter where you found us on the gulf coast, we could be alone riding along the Pensacola National Seashore, or mixed within the heavy traffic of Highway 98 heading towards Fort Walton Beach and Destin. What really gave a sense of travel taking us away from everything was hiding on the motorcycle late at night inside the pine trees, shorelines and hidden cottages of Seaside.