|Me, Bob and Jim at North Shores|
Regular followers of this blog know that I have a long time friend who now resides in a "senior living" facility in Rehoboth. This afternoon Bill and I visited Bob and his partner of 32 years, Jim.
|Bob (upper left) and me (lower right) at Ft. Devens, Mass. 1960|
I've known my friend Bob even longer that I've been with Bill. Bob and I were in the Army together. I joined January 27th, 1960 and Bob was drafted January 27th, 1960. We met after basic training at Ft. Devens, Massachusetts. We were both attending the Army Security Agency training school.
|Bob (left) and me (right) clowning around at lunch break at Ft. Devens, Mass 1960|
Bob and I were best friends, not just friends but best friends during the six months we attended school together. We did everything together from going to the movies, doing laundry and riding home to Pennsylvania on the weekends (a trip hardly worth it because it took eight hours each was but only cost $8.00 per person).
After we were finished school Bob chose an assignment to Ft. Bragg, North Carolina and I chose Ft. Meade, Maryland. We would have chosen the same assignments but there weren't enough allotments.
During the next two and a half years we stayed in almost constant contact by that method of communication from the last century called letters or "snail mail" as it is now know in this digital age.
|Bob (center) and I (right) at Provincetown, Mass 1976|
After I got out of the Army I moved to Pittsburgh. I was gay and I wanted to come out. I came out to everyone. Much to my surprise, when I informed my long time Army friend Bob I discovered he was gay too!
The irony is that we were never attracted to each other physically but our personalities meshed perfectly. Over the years I've always stayed in contact with Bob. In fact Bob is the reason I am living in Delaware now. For many years I used to visit Bob at his single-wide trailer on his 22 acres of wooded land outside of Georgetown Delaware that he called "The Ranch."
|Me with Bob at "The Ranch" near Georgetown, DE 2000|
When I decided to retire, Delaware was my first choice, for several reasons. The low taxes but mainly because of Rehoboth Beach's gay friendly reputation and my good friendship with Bob and his partner Jim.
|Bob and I at the White Capes Cafe in Angola 2002|
|Bob and I still goofing around- 2008|
Last year Bob and Jim moved into a senior living facility in Rehoboth Beach. It is a wonderful (if expensive) facility. Today Bill and I visited Bob and Jim. We haven't seen them for about a month. We were long overdue for a visit.
|Bob during his last visit to our home - 2012|
Sometimes I visit Bob and I'm not sure if he knows who I am. Today was different. Today was a good day. Today we knew who I was. We had a good visit. My friend Bob and I.
|Bob and I today at the senior living facility where he lives today - he still has some of the old spunk - he whispered to me as we were leaving the dining room "See him (a waiter)? That's a 10!"|
That's the Bob I know and love.