Monday, June 28, 2010
I bet most of you have a story or two on how my younger, first cousin Mikey was a rascal. Now that we got that out of the way, let’s move on.
I have great childhood memories of hanging out with Mikey especially at his house in Wantagh. Back in the day, Mikey and I were making plans for me to live in Wantagh. Instead of going back to Europe with my parents, we decided that I would go to school in Wantagh. We could be roommates, fight over the TV remote, play in the backyard pool, visit the neighborhood kids, chase the fire flies, hang with Pukie the dog, go on his triple Decker boat even if it stayed in the harbor, eat Tante Thea’s delicious tomato soup with the little meat balls and watch my older brothers and his older sisters be adult like. He became quite the accomplished drummer and the best I could do was play air guitar. I never did go to school in Wantagh but we sure had fun talking about it.
Later, when I was living in New York City, I was cousin turned groupie. I am fortunate to have seen him do his magic playing the drums with his band at various venues. Damn, he was good not to mention one handsome dude! We kept in touch throughout the years. When I moved to Hawaii in 1990, Mikey was one of our first visitors. Finally, we got to be roomies for many weeks. He was always a good sport, liked to cook, helpful, fun to be around, and we had a blast. He genuinely loved Hawaii, felt at home and vowed that he would come back one day. I wish it was so…
Last summer was our last encounter in New York. Last month was our last conversation. He still talked about going back to Hawaii and he also expressed how Alli would love it. Alli, your family in Hawaii welcomes you with open arms and one day when you come, we’ll show you some of his favorite spots. He sure was proud of you and that was about the only time he would brag.
His Om Hen, Tante Frieda, cousins Henry and Roland are all very sad. Brian, Clarissa, Randall and Winston express how unfair it all is. The kids were really digging getting to know him and Brian got to spend some quality time with him in NY. They all send their deepest heartfelt sympathies as do I. It pleases me a great deal that Clarissa and Alli are keeping in touch. It’s their turn to continue to plan and find a way to get together. Lately, it really seemed like Mikey was ready to turn the corner, give himself more credit and take on life’s challenges. At this stage in his life, I feel he deserved a break. I miss his contagious smile, his optimism, and laughing out loud with him. I’m beyond sad and it pisses me off that his life was cut short. All I can do is picturing him in that big Jacuzzi in the sky eating mangoes!
I wish I could be there close to all the people he loved the most. What we’d like to do as a celebration of his joyful moments on earth, is plant a mango tree in his honor. It will eternally grow tall and strong and rich!
I love you all…