We are hungry for sensation, both physical and intellectual.

We eat, drink, smoke, fuck, enjoy music, low-brow art, books, television, popular culture, and best of all, each other. It is simple and basic and good.

I do a good deal of  reading and generally laze about during this period. I join mail-order book clubs and receive boxes full of brand-new books for free, many with explicit content, because I never could before. I discover Anais Nin, and find myself keyed into the erotic imagination.

We both love sex and all things sexual, especially adult magazines. We subscribe to Penthouse and I become an avid reader of Forum. I find the stories a real turn-on. He prefers Hustler, which is a bit raunchy for my taste compared to the stylish writing, and photo spreads in Penthouse.

I get to see the first-run photos of Vanessa Williams in Penthouse. The photos are racy indeed—as well as the sexy images of Madonna as she poses nude years before her big break.

I believe we are living at the very height of decadence.

This is actually our second apartment. The first one was only for a few weeks, but I loved it.  A tiny little space with weekly rates, the Viking Efficiencies was where we called home for three weeks or so.

I am so happy to have a place all our own. I start my game of housewife—doing this and that, watching my soaps, pretending to be looking for a job. I am really just happy to be on my own and with someone who lets me do whatever I want.

I play records, Cindy Lauper’s She’s So Unusual and David Bowie’s Let’s Dance albums get a lot of wear and tear. I smoke my Marlboro Lights and love my new yellow kitten, Tillie. I don’t go out much by myself in this neighborhood lest I be mistaken for a working girl. I am propositioned once at a payphone down the street.

There is a kidney-shaped swimming pool with lounge chairs all around We swim and smoke and sip chilled wine coolers like we are on vacation. Eventually, we were offered this garage apartment that my brother  was moving out of with his girlfriend.

It is above a garage at the end of a long driveway behind a beautiful old-Florida stucco two-story on Granada Drive with bougainvillea trailing over and around the arched doorways.  A steep staircase begins right at the doorway off the driveway. Upstairs we have one large main room with a kitchen table and chairs, leading into a medium-sized bedroom with a king-sized bed and a brown plaid loveseat, courtesy of my brother who didn’t want the bother of bringing the furniture since they are moving in with his girlfriend’s mom for a spell.

Once in a blue moon we have a spat– like when I find out he is smoking weed again, which I hate. Or he  comes home late and I simply suspect him of smoking again. These quarrels often end with me leaving the house in a huff, with him following after me.

I can’t go too far on foot. And I don’t have a driver’s license. After one particular fight, I lock him out of the house, to which he promptly climbs up the side of the house and in through an open window. I have to laugh at his sheer resourcefulness. No disagreement is ever that serious that we don’t eventually make up and make love.

To be continued…