Mixsonian Larry


3037 SW Archer Road
 Gainesville, FL  

Triumph Sptifie-GT6 next to the house

After having a roommate for three years I decided I wanted a place of my own and found a small house on Archer Road just off of SW 39th Street.  The house was one of three on a short dirt driveway.  In the first lived a little old lady who owned all three and rented the other two.  The second house, twenty yards or so from the landlady’s house was more of a cottage with a living room/kitchen, bath and a small bedroom.   I rented the third house and the end of the driveway which was surrounded on three sides by woods.  It had a small living room, kitchen, fair size main bedroom, a second very small bedroom and a room that had jalousie windows on three side that had hundreds of three-inch glass panes.

   The house partly furnished with a couch and kitchen table with a couple of chairs.  I bought a mattress and built a wood platform to put it on.  The house was kind of run down, with peeling paint, and screens with holes.  The kitchen had old gas stove, old refrigerator, rusty sink and metal cabinets from the 50’s.  I had only been there a month or two when the refrigerator quit working and I asked the landlady about having it fixed.  She said the place came unfurnished and that the refrigerator was just left there by the previous renters and it was up to me to replace it.  I bought a used one.

   When I first moved it a college student named Jim lived in the middle house.  We would often get together and his or my place and play chess or watch TV.  Later another college guy named Michael lived there. 

   I “dated” Beverly when I lived there.  I put dated in quotes for I’m not sure if were dating or just friends, but I thought I loved her.  She had a Volkswagen bus and would often come over and sometimes stay the night.  Her bus engine started giving her trouble and I said I would help her rebuild the engine.  She parked it on the side of the house, and we pulled the engine and put it in the back glass windowed room.  We got a “How to rebuild a Volkswagen Engine for Dummies” book and proceed to tear the engine apart.  Over the next couple of weeks, Beverly would come over and we would rebuild it together.  One evening I got frustrated on how long it was taking and did some work without her being there.  The next day when she came over, she got really mad at me for she wanted to help do it all.

   Beverly and I had an uncertain relationship, at least from my viewpoint.  I never really new if or when she was going to come over or stay the night.  I will always remember one evening I expected her to come by, but the night grew late and I went to bed.  After a laying in bed for a while unable to sleep I thought I heard her Volkswagen bus coming down the driveway.  I lay there hearing it get closer, stop engine shut off.  I didn’t get up, thinking she would just come in as she would do but then I heard the engine start up again.  I jumped up out of bed, dashed out the front door as she was pulling away.  I ran after her the dirt road barefoot, waiving my arms and shouting but she kept going.  Halfway down the driveway I stopped, letting her go physically and, I think, in my heart.

   In the years since I had been away from Gainesville, the three houses were razed and apartments built in their place.  I had no photos of the house but did find a photo of my Triumph Spitfire-GT6 which I repainted in the driveway next to the house. 

   I probably would have stayed there longer but my Aunt Iva Mae house in Micanopy was available to rent.