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The Marina & a Killer Mojito

by Ilana Angel

February 3, 2014 | 7:44 pm

On Saturday I was invited to go out on a boat with my friend Michael who is one of my favorite people ever. He is a powerful and successful literary agent and we have not spoken one time when he did not make me laugh. He is funny, charming, and an inherently kind human being. He restores my faith in humanity and hanging out with him is a pleasure. He has an eclectic group of friends and on Saturday he introduced me to some new people.

The “Captain” is the owner of the 3 bedroom palace and as soon as I stepped on board I was on vacation. There was a lot of food and booze, a sunny and beautiful day, and within 5 minutes I was lounging with a vodka in my hand. Captain is lovely. We have met before through Michael and I like him very much. He is a decent guy and I felt very safe and comfortable with his boating skills. It was going to be a great day.

The cast of characters for my 3 hour tour was interesting. The ”Admiral” was a quiet man who observed everything but said little. “Tinder” was a sweet guy who had just discovered the Tinder app, which is a “dating” site for people to meet for sex, not a relationship. It is like Grinder for straight people. I am fascinated by Tinder and will need to write about that, but our Tinder spent the boat ride trolling for whores.

The “Persian” was a nice looking guy with Osmond quality teeth. He is single and successful, also very active on Tinder. How are nice girls supposed to meet nice men if they are on Tinder looking to get laid? There was also the “Jew” who is a great looking Jewish kid who for reasons I don’t understand, does not date Jewish women. Oy Vey. We also had the “Chef” who is a sweet man. I think he is really lovely.

The Chef thinks my choice to only date Jewish men is stupid. Bless him. Finally we had “Carol”. I love this woman. She is amazing and I am going to write about her as her life’s story is a heartbreaking and inspiring tale of how life can flip on a dime and we can chose to be heroes or victims. She chose to be a hero and I will share her story soon. This group might not make sense on paper but they are a perfect puzzle.

They embraced me as one of their own, it was a fun day, and I was relaxed and calm. I unplugged and took in the beauty of where I was. The view was glorious and I understand why people live by the ocean. We saw pelicans and sea lions, people meditating, families laughing, and people being active as they embraced the surroundings. I drank, laughed, talked, listened, and in the end was able to turn off the noise and truly enjoy myself.

I don’t like to leave my neighborhood. I like being close to home and unless I am going to Temple, I stay in my hood. I was going to cancel on Michael because the beach is a schlep, but in the end my desire to hang out with him trumped my need to be home so I headed out. When we are willing to leave our comfort zone we can be surprised by a world that is wonderful, funny, welcoming, surprising, and not at all scary.

I came home from the boat excursion and had a work thing. When I got home my friend Sig kidnapped me. She called to say she was driving from Malibu to take me out for a drink. I was tired, already had a lot to drink, but she was not taking no for an answer. She needed me and so I went. We agreed we would stay out for 1 hour. That was it, 1 hour. Cut to 3 hours and 4 watermelon mojitos later, we were having a blast.

I have not had so much to drink since Spring Break '84. I was drunk and having the best time I’ve had in a long time. We set up shop at the bar and met a colorful cast of characters. From the illustrator who sat and drew comic books while drinking, to the guy who was trying to figure out how to break up with his girlfriend, to the bartender who wanted my keys, to the single guy who’s married friends had long since left.

I don’t go out often but this was about me broadening my horizons and living my life a little bit. With my son’s departure for university looming, I need to learn how to live a different life and it turns out the easiest way for me to redefine myself and how my life looks, is to lean on my friends. I am blessed to have wonderful fiends who really care about me. Some are new, some are from childhood, and all are remarkable.

I did not expect to have such a great day, nor did I plan on drinking so much. I was hammered, but it was the kind of drunk that brings laughter and relief. I have been wound up with stress and on Saturday, for the first time in as long as I can remember, I allowed myself to relax and unwind. I laughed from a place deep in my soul, was not scared to venture out of my little bubble. I am so thankful for Michael and Sig.

I have been a mother for 18 years and it shapes how I see the world. I want to walk behind my son with a first aid kit, camera and gun, ready to save him, fight those who want to bring him harm, and capture all of his important steps. If I take that energy and fear and recreate it as new challenges and dreams for myself, then sync them with the hopes and dreams for my son, I will truly be able to keep the faith.

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR

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Ilana Angel writes two blogs for JewishJournal.com. KEEPING THE FAITH is about her worldview as a single Jewish mother, and KEEPING IT REAL is all about reality television....

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