A Visit to Casa Jaymie
Packed my bag for our over night date and loaded it in the car. The plan was to meet Richard at La Costa around noon. Our couples massage was scheduled for 2:00. Armed with my directions from MapQuest, I began the drive south to Casa Jaymie around 9:00. I was supposed to be there at 9:00. Tough. Let her wait. She had texted that her dad would be there to meet with me. I was hoping she would also attend this little meet and greet, but, alas...that potential endorphin rush was not meant to be.
I was only in the car a few minutes when my mobile phone rang. My BFF, Julie, was calling to check up on my mental state. I gave her a quickie update and filled her in on my mission of the morning. Let's just say...She was not a fan of the plan.
"What?? Why?? What good will this do?"
"No way I'm letting HER benefit from anything regarding Richard. Besides, you know how I enjoy making her twist in the wind."
'You're on your way now? Right now?"
"Yep. On the 67 as we speak."
"Swing by and get me. You can not go over there alone." Julie was willing to leave work to save me from myself. I took her up on the offer.
The directions were less than crystal clear. We took a wrong turn or two. Had to call Jaymie for navigation assistance. Her dad answered. He spoke to me as if we had been invited over for tea and biscuits, so calm and polite. He gave us the clarification we needed and we quickly arrived in front of their house on Coronado Avenue.
Jaymie's home looked a lot like I thought it would, cluttered front yard, drab color, cheap shingle roof and car in the driveway that would need a paint job before anyone would take it as a trade in. I strained my memory for a mental image of Jaymie's car. I only saw it for a brief moment previously, but if memory served, her car was no where in sight. We parked and walked to the front door, knocked and waited.
A balding, middle aged man with a girth too wide for his short stature, opened the door. I recognized him immediately from the Eagle's concert, James, Jim, HER daddy. For a brief second, I felt sorry for the guy. He was gonna clean up his daughter's mess. She had shamed herself and her family. Maybe it would have shown greater parenting skills to make her face the consequences of her actions. But, who am I to question that. He has sent her away, or she chose to run and hide. Don't know how the choice was made, but she was no where to be seen.
I made proper introductions and James invited us in.
One of the ways James had hoped to improve his lot in life was on the shirt tails of my husband, but Jaymie beat him to Richard's shirt tails and his pants, too, so that gravy train was lost to him. Along with, I would assume, much of the pride he had in Jaymie, if he ever had any at all to begin with.
We entered into a tight area, also cluttered. On the floor, to my left, against the wall, was the massage table, along with other items that I couldn't quite see. He lead us to the left, into the kitchen and we sat in three aluminum and vinyl chairs that were a rare throw back to the 70's. The table was shoved tightly up against the left wall and even though the room was very poorly lit, the curtains were drawn shut. Perhaps James didn't want nosey neighbors to ponder the reason for an early morning visit to his home from two women that obviously did not live anywhere near this neighborhood.
He began the conversation with an apology. I know we sat there for at least 30 minutes, but I only remember a little of what we discussed. I can tell you, I never cried, not once. The whole thing was freakishly reasonable (which I realize is kind of an oxymoron) until I brought up the cash. James, then, began to squirm. I felt just like a predator with one large paw on her prey. The next bite would be lethal.
"Half of the money Richard loaned Jaymie, by law, is mine. If I have to sue her for it, I will."
"Jaymie said he gave her money. It was never a loan."
I was getting very sick of that weak defense. I became more insistent, one might say aggressive, in my demands. He thought I was bluffing about going to court and airing my husband's dirty laundry. Julie assured him, I would enjoy nothing more. We went around and around about the amount Jaymie owed me and when I would get it. He felt I wasn't holding the right person responsible. He referred to Richard in terms of a bully that coerced his baby girl. PLEEEZE! Nobody was gonna call Jaymie sweet & innocent anytime soon, however, I firmly explained to him that Richard would be held MORE than accountable. His life would be riddled with punishment.
He wasn't gonna budge before talking to Jaymie, but I was relentless. Knowing how I tend to pursue my goals like a pit bull with a bone, Julie stepped in. She said, "This isn't going anywhere right now. I think it's time we leave."
James did get smart right there at the end. "If Jaymie does give you this money, will you agree to never contact her or any member of this family again?"
Without hesitation, "Of course. I just want the money back."
That wasn't an accurate statement. I already knew that I wanted all the other emails. There were so many she hadn't sent yet. Why was I giving up my bid for those? I was also risking answers to the endless questions that would haunt me in the months to come. I couldn't possibly imagine how they would haunt me that morning, in that humble home, but I would come to need Jaymie to quiet my mind. (At least, I THOUGHT I needed her.)
Once again, I acted much too quickly. I signed that agreement, hand written on a tinsel thin paper napkin.
I signed it and he made me a copy on a FAX in his office, which was probably a tiny corner of his bedroom. As he returned to hand it to me, we got up and took the two or three steps back toward the front door and the pile of bootie I came to retrieve. I was getting more than I bargained for. The massage table and bracelet were there along with a bottle of Dolce & Gabbana Rose the One perfume, (Of course it was ROSE. I despise rose perfume. It reminds me of funerals) a decanter of room fragrance reeds and a little something to make me swallow hard. Richard had given her his high school senior, black and white pic. You know, the little yearbook images you could trade with fellow students? The tiny photo of him at 18, with the date written on the back by his dead mother. My heart twisted as I looked at her crooked cursive, hoping she couldn't see this painful moment from heaven.
Julie helped me load it all in the back of my Volvo. I thanked Jim for his time and told him to contact me about when I could expect the money. As Julie and I drove away, I thanked her for coming with me and keeping me in line. I also told her to take the massage table for herself. Sell it on eBay.
"Get as much as you can and keep it all. I don't want anything she touched. Maybe not even Richard."