Tuesday, March 10, 2015

the memories of my youth

Tonight I came out of work to a familiar smell. The air warming, but still slightly biting. The smell was one of damp grass, and flowing water. The creek behind the fire hall has thawed. It reminded me of a summer night roughly fifteen years ago. Its the night I made my first "grown up" leap of faith.

The apartments, and fire hall were still relatively new. Behind them, vast fields of hay, and mooing cows. Protected from the train tracks by a ten foot chain link fence. That incidentally, had various holes cut out of it by teenagers bent on trouble. I was fourteen.

It was great. I was old enough to do fun things past ten on a Saturday, but not so old as to go hunting for trouble. A friend had her cousin from North of Edmonton come for a visit because his mom was off somewhere with someone.

And he was hers to entertain. She decided he was going to meet and hang out with all her friends. We sat on her third floor balcony, while he played the guitar, she the bass, and I attempted to channel my inner Jewel. Which I have you know, was very cool at the time.

We wandered to the Mac's for banana slurpees while crisscrossing over wooden bridges in the park adjacent to her building. Over the creek, tossing stones, and startling ducks. I looked at him, tall and nearly sixteen, I loved the fact he didn't mind my silly jokes, and thought my super short hair was very cute. Black hair, blue eyes, and he played guitar-see where this is going?  We liked the same bands. Garbage, Hole, Edwin, Eminem who was new that year, the Cardigans and all other manner of mid to late 90's bands. He love astronomy, and read rolling stone. He'd read the same biographies as I had, and thought school was a waste of time. It was brilliant.

One night after Rocky Horror picture Show, and little Barber Shop of horrors, My friend had fallen, asleep. I needed to make the long 7 minute trek home, he decided I needed company. We walked, and talked. Both of us turning around and crossing over the creek in various spots. Only to repeat the entire process. My heart wasn't working right, It was beating to hard, but not in the right rhythm.  My stomach felt like a hole was trying to open up and swallow all sane thoughts.

On and on we journey'd. Back and forth. We finally stopped on a cute arched bridge to watch the mist float in.  The temperature had dropped, and a musk rat was swimming down the creek to the echo of crickets and trains. A meteor shower had started. So, we watched, standing as close to each other as we could with out being obvious.

I don't remember what was said, but I do remember thinking he was very pretty. No boy had ever been prettier in my eyes. I remember the feeling. The nervousness of letting him lean in, and worry on what it would feel like. His mouth was soft, and gentle and he tasted like Dr. Pepper and cool ranch Doritos. That was it, it was done. A few soft movements, and the smell of the night was forever imprinted in my brain, to be reviewed with a smile years later.

It was perfect.  Nicholas Sparks couldn't have written it better himself. It was smooth, and gentle. A glimpse into growing up. Proof it wasn't ALL bad.

 I never saw him again.

I had run through the entire memory before even starting my car. Ending my Monday with a glowing shimmer.

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