There have been times when I penned a Musing that it has left me with
a sense of satisfaction, even exultation, but that is not now the case,
for I write with a figurative tear in my eye, and an real ache in my heart.
To begin the story, I visited a friend in San Francisco a number of years ago. He had a house-guest who was recovering from a seven-part heart bypass. He was hooked up to an oxygen tank, and sitting at a computer designing greeting cards to send to his friends.
We were introduced and instantly there was a rapport, for in many ways I recognized that we were kindred spirits. From time to time in the ensuing months I visited there and with him. We even went out to his favorite eating places, although he was suffering inconvenience for the effort.
There came a time when he was dissatisfied with his accommodations in that place and I suggested he move to Modesto where I had a home. And there he resided for several years. He was one of the family with my nephew, Kris, and I.
It was here that he discovered the world of the internet, for he spent many hours at his computer which he had set up next to mine. He started surfing sites that piqued his fancy. They promoted contact between older and younger men who were attracted to each other. It wasn't long before he decided to promote a similar site himself. I even cooperated by allowing photo essays of myself in the buff (with some reluctance). Of course that was four or five years ago, the site that is now known around the world as Ben Boxer's Clubhouse.
As fate would have it a young man showed up that suited his fancy, his name was Ron. Weekends were spent here together and a relationship developed. That relationship finally blossomed into a full time partnership and they moved together, where they lived happily for a couple of years.
Then early one Sunday morning I received the devastating call, "Brock passed away last night." Due to his physical condition it was not really unexpected, for that was the prognosis, but as always it came as a shocking surprise. A few weeks later a few of his friends gathered in the Japanese Garden in San Francisco's Golden Gate park. It was largely a sharing of memories, and quite upbeat. He had specifically requested that no ceremony be held, but we couldn't let that happen without a farewell, could we?.
Now all we have is the site, and memories of a character who was full of the joy of life, whose past experiences regaled his friends, and whose life had been fuller than life itself. He will not fade from the memories of those who knew him well, I, for one of them. His heritage isn't even fully defined yet, but it is certainly significant.
Dear Brock (aka Ben Boxer) you brightened our way, added to our lives,
made your contribution to the happiness of those who followed your ways,
and if ever one could say I truly loved you, it was old Hilly himself.