So I decided to explore. I was enthralled by the beach and the board walk, pretty women and beautiful art. Can I ask for more. I felt so lucky. I needed this so badly. This was the perfect break from my tumultuous life. I found a hippy on the beach. Long dread locks and a long beard. I had never seen someone like this. He was playing the guitar and I decided to engage him. Something about him was intriguing. I stood near him and after a while we began talking. After we were talking for a bit, he looks at me and says, "I sense that we are family" . I was taken aback. I wasn't quite sure what he meant. "Are you Jewish? He asked me". I was shocked. I purposely didn't wear any head covering and definitely didn't want to be identified as a Jew. I had wanted to start all over again with nothing to do with my past. "Yes" I told him. I couldn't lie. He said his name was Rafael Yakov and he was from New Jersey. I was surprized , I had no idea that a Jew would look this way. In my naive mind, I thought all Jews were Yeshiva Bachurim. I was also disappointed. I had come out to Calfornia to spread my wings and test the waters. I wanted different people. I wanted to meet all people not only Jews and here I was talking to another Jew! In some way, I felt like God was telling me that I could run but I couldn't hide, that no matter where I went I would allways be associated with Jews and I hated that thought even more. I hated being a Jew and I hated the thought having a god that would make sure that I remained one.
Rafael and I talked for a while. As we sat on the boardwalk he asked me if I have ever heard of the song "and you shall love the Lord your God" by Debbie Friedman. I had never heard the song and I couldn't help but be in awe of the fact that I had run away from everything Jewish just to come here to Venice and have someone sing to me a Jewish song about loving God. Was there some kind of message in this or what? To me it was so ironic. I knew that it was impossible for me to love God. I had enough of him. So what kind of ironic purpose might there be in hearing a song about loving God? Of course I was doubly tortured by the fact that Rafael's singing made me keenly aware that it might be possible to love God and if that was the case, then my anger and disappointment were all a waste. If God, loves me, there was no purpose to be upset at him and if he loved me, why couldn't I feel it. How could be loved, if I feel so angry and anxious all the time. I had no way to resolve this problem. To me, I was sure that God was after me all the time to destroy my life and make it painful. How could other people feel love of God. What was wrong with this picture. Someone help me. If he hates me, at least now a I know why I feel so much pain, but since I didn't know, it was not only painful, it was also confusing.
Rafael, played the guitar really nicely, I needed a guitar, that was the answer. He told me he would sell me his for 20 dollars. I felt a little bad to buy his guitar because now he couldn't play it but he walked my back to my apartment and I gave him the money. Unfortunately, I had a very hard time making the guitar make a nice sound. He was so good that he was able to make a terrible guitar make a nice sound.