I Can Remember……



I Can Remember……




I’m not really sure what brought this on.  Maybe it’s a reminder and it’s the essence of my renascence.  But, I was lying awake in bed a couple hours ago and I was flooded with my adventurous memories.  And as I was thinking, before each memory, ‘I can remember’…….and that would be followed by the memory.  I thought it was rather cool.

Is it the innocence of my past that is leading my way?

It is like I can touch my memories……I haven’t realized til now that connecting specific dots from my past is what leads me here and urges me to follow.

I’m having a WOW moment!

As a youngster, I remember staying outdoors and until my mom would call out the back door “Johnny”!  Which meant that it was dinner time, bath time and soon to be bed time.



While I was limited where I could wander too (my parents were very strict and that belt hurt!) that didn’t stop my imagination.  At my cousin’s house, there was an old rabbit cage that we would pretend it was our spaceship.  It was easy.  There was a nearby house that had lots of trees (I particularly remember the banana trees) that I would pretend was a jungle (like Max does now) and carry out my expeditions.  And yes, there was tree climbing to see what the distance was hiding.

I remember vividly the fun from just out my back door!

While I enjoyed reading as I do today, I was slow in my reading skills and my little active brain was much like me unable to keep still so reading was a challenge. Even reading comic books was a challenge as I’d put myself in the pages of the adventures.


I Can Remember……




If my memories were cake, I can taste them.

Soon enough my parents allowed my out of the confines of my small but playful city block.  From there my attention drew me to the bayou, Bayou Plaquemine to be exact. My cousin being a few years older would often tantalize my imagination by telling me of his experience on the banks and in the bayou.  Now, it’s my turn.

I wasn’t disappointed.  I’d take a local friend on the adventure making our way thru the trees and thicket that surrounded the meandering body of water.  I loved walking the paths that were trampled for years by my elders but……the real intrigue was off the beaten path to find the unknown.  Now, from where the ‘woods’ began the distance to the bayou I’m guessing would be about 30 yards at the entry.  So, it wasn’t a large expense but it was long!  It ran from beneath the old railroad tracks on the edge of downtown Plaquemine to distances unknown!!  That’s long!

But!  That area was off limits to me by my parents.  The whole area surrounding the bayou was off limits.  See, I was breaking rules at an early age.



Soon I was able to ride my bicycle across the tracks downtown to the library.  A great place to beat the summer heat.  But, I didn’t read though.  I sought out the ‘The National Geographic’!  And I now was finding adventure in print and always thought I’d like to visit those far away places.  I couldn’t seem to get enough!


I Can Remember……




Before long I’d convinced my mom to subscribe to subscribe to “National Geographic”.  All this was taking place in my formative years…….I was intrigued.  It was my first introduction to naked women too.  Showing natives from foreign lands in their natural habitat!

Marching on in time I never lost interest in the journeys that “National Geographic” would lead me to but, my restlessness was taking hold.  Rebellion of the mid 60’s attracted my rambling mind.  And music was my sedative. While it would be years before and drug experimentation would enter my life, I was clearly looking and longing for something different.

Just as I was entering high school (which included junior high back then, population dictated that) my mind was wandering even more.  This was a point of contention with my parents because I really didn’t know why I was like I was and neither did they and they weren’t much interested in finding out.



My attention turned to moving away.  Far away.  Far away at that time would be Baton Rouge upon graduation.  I’d return, but I wouldn’t stay.  A fight ensued between me and my parents ending with me in the emergency room getting stitches and the next day leaving for Gainesville, Texas.

I was now far away.

I was also without direction.

Occasionally I would return to Plaquemine to lick my wounds but I always knew I wouldn’t stay.

Somewhere in the mix of life, I earned my way to managing radio stations which took me on adventures to Oklahoma, Florida, Tennessee, Kentucky, Ohio, Wyoming and back to Louisiana.



Business had my attention as I didn’t like having a boss…..they tended to stifle creativity and were a bit too bossy for my liking.

Having my own business now afforded me an opportunity to get around, I’d become more mobile.  I’d scoot down to all parts of Florida on a whim.  Even Mexico!  My world was getting bigger.


I Can Remember…… 




It wasn’t long after losing my business that I found myself living in St. Petersburg, Florida.  There I stayed for around 17 years.  There was a lot of exploring for me to do.  So, this wasn’t a bad place for me to be.  I actually even got a college education and bought a house.  No white picket fence though.

BOOM!  I no longer fit in.  I’d been reading too much!  I’d been seeking out “National Geographic”  at yard sales!  True!!  And the ‘internet’ had exploded opening up my world and now……I was bored and my traveling shoes wanted to travel.

Fast forward!  I quit my job, sold my house, paid off my bills, and moved to the Caribbean coast of Mexico!  From there I’ve explored the state of Quintana Roo (I’ve gone ‘deep’ into the jungle) on the Yucatan Peninsula visiting ancient Mayan ruins, caves with bats (and other odd shit), spent time with local people in the Pueblos, bar hopped and much more (walked in the rain for the sheer pleasure).



I’ve climbed mountains and visited volcanos in Costa Rica…..leisured in hot springs from the active volcanos, walked the halls of an abandoned sanitorium, made friends with the national Rugby captain, drank cabbage beer, walked those hanging bridges thru the rainforest of the mountains.  I’m breathless just writing!

Caught a plane with not too much planning and explored all the coastline of Puerto Rico and visited the Arecibo Observatory!  Walked black sandy beaches and sold gold colored sand too.  I drank their beer and got lost in the mountains.  Rained out a lot of activities so I’m forced to revisit!

Oh!!!  The Bacardi Distillery!  I drank samples until I wobbled.

I’ve just gotten started.  Back to the states for a holiday visit and then on to Europe.



And the “National Geographic”, I now visit it on line via the internet.

Life is good!

Peace, love, and beaches,

John


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