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A Romance in Augsburg [Chapters: 9 & 10: Her Body, Smooth as Silk]
Continuation of Chapter #9
“He’ll be able to handle it,” Ski said like a chap ready to add sometime funny to it, but it just didn’t come out or up. He was what I would call a human dilemma; that is to say, he would do the opposite in many cases, which is to fence one’s self in, instead of freeing one’s self of: in order to get out; and if he found a girl it never lasted, he worked more on exclusions than forming an ongoing relationship; his expectations, that is what it was, dealing with girl relationships (and they seemed to know it quick enough) involved a hard core, control factor–on his behalf.
Ski was built well, and nice looking, but no one but Ski knew Ski, maybe that also is what bothered the girls he dated, they couldn’t figure him out: too unpredictable; they only liked what they saw for a very short period, than they wanted to escape; on the other hand, I was too predictable.
We had met a girl once from Denmark (met her at the October Fest of 1970, in Munich), and he dated her for a while–he had gone to Denmark to date her; I met her, and she was a doll, dark bronze skin, healthy from the breast to her little toes. Like I said, He met her at one of the big feast with me then he went to Denmark to be with her during one of his ten-day vacations; only to come back and say she smoked pot, and took some LSD, along with some other drugs, and he tried to reform her and she got mad and told him the relationship wouldn’t work, and to be quite frank, Ski hated drugs, and she was lucky to get away from him. I think when I was with him I really didn’t want to meet anyone, kind of claustrophobic of some form of impending disaster to befall me.
As we all sat at the bar drinking I figured somewhere along the line tonight, this night, before the evening ended Chris would attempt to find me, it was useless to attempt going any other place, she’d suddenly show up, and if she was drinking she’d drive all over town and the cops would stop her, although they never seemed to, maybe that was more my fear than hers. I was better to stay here, right where I was, if she didn’t show up, it would be fine, I’d just go back to my room, get drunk, go to sleep.
Sandy was feeling good tonight, she was one of the waitress’, I think she was high all the time [pot], especially at after, or during dusk; it was 11:30 PM. They closed the bar at 2:00AM.
“Feeling silly,” I asked her.
“No…just funny………….. Ignite meeeee baby!” she sat on my lap, head back as if someone was going to pour a drink down her throat. She grabbed my hand and we got on the table and danced…then a few more Germans did the same.
After an hour she stopped, comb her hair, checked her mascara and calmly said, “Chick’s fault he got me drunk,” and she called to the other bar maid, “it’s 12:30 Hun…let’s go home?”
Ski was looking at Sandy, I think he wanted to give her a ride home, not sure if it was all the way home though where he really wanted to take her; if she doesn’t go into tangents, I’ve seen her drunk, and it’s no picnic, she’d be fine, and could maybe just take a taxi I thought.
“Ski, I’d let that one go she’s too wound-up.”
“Yaw, but I like her dressing-gown,”
“Ya-www, sure…Ski,” I said, then she sat up at the bar counter, lit a cigarette, and must have thought about passing out or sobering up, she just starred at the bottles across from her, logic would say she really didn’t care for anyone at the moment, an unanswerable question.
“Chick, take me hoommmmmmme,” she let out aloud.
“Well, — I am in love with Chris, you know that…” she turned about, almost falling off the stool, “…start the car, I want to go home–.”
“So do I,” I commented.
“What do you want to do Chick?” asked Ski.
“Be careful, now, she’s coming after you…Sandy that is.”
“Ski, let’s get out of here.”
“We’re out of here man…” said Ski, standing up, as I did, Sandy had turned around again–I figured if I made it out the door quick, she’d not notice, and someone else could give her a ride home (an out of sight, out of mind thing).
Ski and I walked back to the barracks, he didn’t say much, nor did I, I suppose I never said too much, and Chris, she made up for the lack of my dialogue.
“I’m tired Ski, see yaw soon again…bye!”
I walked in the barracks, and Ski walked down along side of the building, then around the corner, and to his barracks which was next to mine.
As I opened the door to my room, I felt at home again, safe I suppose. Chris came to mind; I just can’t figure her out, I questioned myself: She desires the very things that will destroy her at the end. I mean if she really has this illness or disease, drinking, smoking and running all daylong to her pizza guesthouse, seeing friends, me, her kid, and her hotshot boyfriend, she will burnout before her time. Maybe this was the wrong thing to think, for if she was dying, or for that matter if I was dying, I’d want to make some kind of connection with life…live as much as I could, in the limited time I had; I stopped for a second, yaw, maybe this is/or was the connection before: now or never.
As I sat on my bed, it came to mind: here is this girl, a girl I had met a few months ago, sitting at the disco and swaying her finger about for my attention. I was a bit shy, and she made some promising remarks. And now the relationship that sprung from that moment, the one we absorbed, or it absorbed us, with all its moods, ways of thinking, and so forth and so on, here we were: now acquiring doubts and hesitation: these elements, and other things were filling our world, our relationship, and still ahead were some kind of needs we still needed meet head-on, for both of us; maybe to live each day to its fullest, for if five years was all the doctors gave her (so she had told me), hell, make the best of it I’d say, although it did make things awkward I’m sure for her, thirty-years from now she’d have been dead for twenty-five of them, what then would I say? Good question for me. I looked at my clock it was 1:15 AM. Well, she’s not coming (I told myself), go to sleep Chick; I must like talking to myself, I was doing a lot of it this evening.
As I laid down on the bed, my head started to spin, and think: what a pity to have her prefer me for her lover; she wanted self-satisfaction in her selection, and along came pains with the romance, and work, I don’t think she was planning on this (a lot of work in maintaining an ongoing relationship), but maybe she just got a little more than she planned for; maybe after I go, she would find another like me (a new soldier boy, so I was contemplating off and on, but not much). It was the first time or maybe the second time it had occurred to me she could have ongoing GI boyfriends (past, present, future), you know, none that would last, only the rich one would last until she was a…dead person: perhaps he was selected to be her death partner. Maybe that was she, and his solution to her dilemma. Maybe he wanted to see me because I lasted the longest of her extra curriculum conquests; what was I made out of: candy and spice and everything nice? I had lots of guesses, and that is all they were.
It would be too bad if she called it off. If anything she seemed to be more seriously dependent on me than I to on her. Or maybe that was just the way I saw things, or felt. And she didn’t know it. Yet she wasn’t all that able to take care of herself, for the sickness was making her lose weight, making her weak; too many thoughts for my spinning head.
I had to step outside my own concerns now, step outside my little world you could say, I did make an effort to understand the situation, or so called one-way relationship; she felt often I did attempt to love her, but only halfway saving the other half perhaps for safety reasons. She never knew it, but she never once said she love me, maybe that bothers me. I never said it either, maybe I wanted to but couldn’t, and that also bothered me. But could we afford to really and truly love? I asked myself. My mind was never broken, and I often thought, how all this was going to end. I guess I felt we had it all, a rare thing one might say: we touched each others lives, and I might have said at one time ‘…it is better to have loved and lost, than never to have loved at all…’ another saying I had heard some place, but now that I think of it, love or romances, especially when you know they are not going to last, take a lot of energy, human resources, I’m not sure if I’d go along with that philosophy anymore. Not if I would be able to see in the future that is. But then I’d not trade it either, nor would I try to stop it, nor did I try to stop it.
Everything I seemed to want from her was at a different level than hers, something she could not give, yet she never asked me to go beyond where I dare not go. I guess she thought, beyond it was unreal, and time did not allow it. Which seemed not to have anything to do with love, as long as it was left on the surface? For some odd reason it seemed as if I was shaking myself free, yet, knowing somehow it would not last at the same time; and on the other hand, I would survive I knew this–I would survive through whatever kind of relationship developed from this bond; therefore, while here in Germany, why should I sabotage anything that made me happy, gave me pleasure, and took a little work, and a lot of understanding. And most likely she would do the same. And so that is how my mind finalized this, for the moment.
She pushed her way into the barracks and into my room: “Ok…can I stay for a few hours? I got to sober up?”
“No problem, just be quite, ok?”
She nodded her head yes. The gradual discovery that she was successful in getting into the barracks, and that, faintly discovering no one was there with me, no girls that is, made her happy; she took her cloths off and jumped in bed with me.
I looked at her slim waist, I asked: “What’s the gold chain around your waist for?”
“I have it on so I can tell how much weight I’m losing by it.” I did not follow up on it, for this cancer thing in my mind was still in the premature stage of disbelief, although I knew there was something to it. She then laid on top of me, as I caressed her long thin body as smooth as silk; I shut the window, it had a chill coming through the cracks, we then made love, both passing out within the hour.
Music and the
A glimpse of July morning sunlight crept through my window, soothing as it moved along my face until it covered my eyes waking me up more than I wanted to be. Discovering with a happy surprise and sense of accomplishment I had slept until 10:00 AM, quite late for me. I normally got six hours sleep, not nine, if not four.
It was Monday, and I had to work at noon, so I quickly got dressed and headed down to the Barbarian Crossroads Service Club. When I got there I grabbed a candy bar out of my pocket I had gotten from the benders in the guardhouse, it would do for now, a kind of quick breakfast; after that, I went to the backroom of the library section, there I sat in my usual chair, shut the door behind me. This was really, a one-person room, sound proof at that, with a record player. I picked up my favorite long playing record that had about twelve songs of Nat King Cole on it, and played “When You’re Smiling,” several times, I could sometimes stay for hours drifting into never-never land in this room: going into fantasies like a movie projector playing one after the other…
I look out the upper small window, which looked over the tall wall of the compound to see the traffic on the other side of it. And then back to my resting spot. The song, Rambling Rose was now playing: –I liked that also, and then came Wolverton Mountain. How we learn to appreciate little things in life! I played the guitar, and music, in all forms seemed to be a delight for my soul; likened to water, rivers, and lakes.
It was nearly noon, I thought I had better not waste any more time and get to my guard-post at the main gate. I could be relieved for lunch at 1:30 PM, if I wanted to, but I really didn’t like going to the mess-hall [military kitchen] on this side of the compound, I’d rather go on the other side where the MP’s [Military Police] ate. They always had good food there. Matter-of-fact, I had just signed a petition somewhat out of duress along with some twenty-five other soldiers, complaining about the lack of food being served at the Artillery mess hall. I really did not want to sign it but my friends kind of made me feel as if I was spoiled because I could eat at both mess-halls, and they couldn’t and needed my support, — it seemed OK at the time so I did, somehow I think it’s going to come back and bite me though. One should follow one’s instincts I do believe, or at least I should have, they have always been pretty much right on, almost like a second language to me, an ancient inner language telling you of danger.
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