The Real Story of Diego Garcia, Part Three

Part One Here

Part Two Here

The Eighties Kinda Sucked For Me. Not horribly but slightly. Now I will digress and tell you why.

During the Eighties, I came home from Egypt and SFM. I had spent the last three years of the Seventies in the Sinai Desert and these were glorious years for me. 

During the (very early) Eighties, actually very late Seventies, I got married.

At the beginning of the Eighties, Ronald Reagan was president and I was twenty-two years old: could not deny me or tell me anything! I had ‘seen’ the World!

Ronnie

During the Early Eighties, the Prime Lending Rate went from nine percent to twenty percent, thus making it real difficult for me to sustain a Small Business loan for my Tropical Fish Store.

I overcame all of this. By sheer guts and asshole-ness. (and by writing a seriously hot check, for three thousand dollars! I gave a shit not.)

But, I embraced it:

And somewhat thrived. Trickle Down, as they say, but not to mention, my bride and I slept on Army Cots for two years… We slept with the fishes.

And ate baked potatoes, cooked in a microwave which we had stolen borrowed. With pressed ham.

And the occasional onion… on Saturdays. And bacon on Sundays. And sometimes sour cream on Mondays.

We eventually left that place (after four years) Yep, we escaped Nacogdoches, Texas, which for us had been what we could imagine living in The Movie ‘Deliverance’ would have been like.

We escaped to Plano, Texas, which for many (but not us), was like living in the TV Show ‘Dallas’.

We discovered that we were more poor there than anywhere. In Nacogdoches we were ‘business owners’. In Plano we were just scum: no furniture, no fixtures, no nada: SCUM. We got thrown out of our first apartment because “Y’all don’t have no furniture and y’all are sleeping on the floor. This violates y’all’s lease agreement. Goodbye.”

We soldiered on…

We did sell, at a garage sale, damn near everything we owned, to include my prized Celestron Telescope and my wife’s Mikasa China from her first marriage.

Just to eat.

(Food was a prerequisite back then)

Finally….

We made a stance.

My Long-time Bride and my Soul-Mate, and a veteran of the “hard days” tole me one day,

She said, “Lance’, this is no way to live! Do something! Any thing!”

So, I did.  I told her I was gonna join the U.S. Navy. And send her all her allotment and everything else. And meant it.

She initially balked at this  (and she was former U.S. Army Reserve) at that time.

She said to me, and I quote:

“Lance, you are gonna do this thing, right? Then, I ask of you one thing: I wanna be a house-wife for just one year… can you give me that?”

“Yes! I said.”

So I got another job and worked my ass…

And I gave her her one year.

Then I joined the Navy.

And I did not see her again for ten years.

And sometimes after all these years, I still miss our poverty days, because we were so happy being poor.

And I did serve my country, just as I had promised her I would (We, The Both, were Patriots, by an’ by…)

Navy!

tex flag

 

What does any of this have to do with Diego Garcia?

Stay tuned…

16 thoughts on “The Real Story of Diego Garcia, Part Three

  1. There’s a dark, romantic, poetic panache in struggling when you’re young. Everyone should do it. It affords you a proper perspective. But there comes a time when the struggle becomes too much of a grind. It gets you down. You have to make a move at some point to try for a better life. Embracing middle class isn’t as romantically poetic as the struggle, but it’s a hell of a lot less exhausting.

    Liked by 1 person

    • I’ve been rich and I’ve been poor.
      Rich is better.
      But I was happiest when I was poor.
      Probably because I was younger then, so much younger then.
      Thank you for your timely comments.
      Cheers,
      Lance

      Like

  2. I considered serving my country but enlisted in the military instead. And bred tropical fish, too. My margins were higher than any retail store I sold to. 🙂

    Of Reagan: Never before had a man with so little done so much for himself and then, having got it, done so little for others. But he did pave the way for others much like him to do the same. We should organize a party to go to his grave and return the favor of trickle-down.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Reading your comments made me forget my original post.
      Did I have a poignant point? Probably not! I need to read the final chapters of Elwood to understand, and by the way, I have an Elwood Photo and story to tell YOU.
      Christ Man! You cut me to some quick!
      Laughing!
      And admit one thing: You know you always keep me in check an’ balance!
      Laughing fucking out loud!

      “I considered serving my country but enlisted in the military instead.”

      Fuck off!
      (Just Kidding!!!)
      To quote Rocky to Adrian: “Hey! Don’t Leave Town!”

      Like

  3. Sounds like Arkansas now. it’s easy to look back and have regrets, remember the good times if you have them. I was a kid in the 80’s, but my dad was a trucker and made good money. Unfortunately I didn’t live with my dad.

    I miss the hair bands of the 80’s. I was so poor in the 90’s I don’t miss a thing lol.

    Thanks again for serving our country! 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    • Anna, I was rich…once…I pissed it all away.
      I think I like being poor. I did love my first wife; she stood by me.
      Thick and thin, mostly thin.
      🙂

      Like

      • I am happy with now having a great husband and daughter. My life changed at 18. I started living. We’ve had lean times, never been rich, and worked like crazy to be middle class. Now we are trying to stay middle class. As long as I have my family mentioned above, I can deal with the rest. Glad you had someone to love and who truly loved you back. I believe it can happen again. 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

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