Friday, March 15, 2013

Had it Been that Long Ago?

From time-to-time over the years he thought back to the event that happened about 60 years ago. The event itself was still imbedded in his memory, but it was truly a little fuzzy because of the passage of years.
He could remember the chronology of the events that happened that Saturday, though the images were surely not distinct or sharply in focus.
The day started off not any different from many of his Saturdays. He got on the Trailways bus a couple of blocks from his home and was soon watching the scenery go by as the bus headed for the city. Forty minutes later, he stepped off the bus and headed to the first motorcycle shop he would visit.
He'd, much to his mother's displeasure, been obsessed with motorcycles since he'd briefly had a motor scooter a year or so before. It was a Sears Allstate model that he'd just about lived on. Riding everywhere, of course this back in the day when no one wore helmets or any kind of protective gear. Kids just jumped on them and rode. Yes, they got banged-up and bruised but that was the nature of it all. Guess you could say Darwin was monitoring them.
He loved looking at the BSAs, Triumphs, Ariels, AJSs, and Nortons. Occasionally one of the shop owners would give him a brochure and that would really make his day.
He day-dreamed about when he'd get one and be clothed in black leather. A black leather jacket with a million zippers. Jeans. And, heavy black engineer-type boots. And, most likely some black gloves.
He checked the movie schedule, grabbed a hot dog, and soon was sitting in the darkened theater watching the first of two cowboy movies. Several hours later, after watching two movies, ten cartoons, and several installments of two serials, he came out of the theater blinking in the sun.
At the magazine shop he bought a motorcycle magazine and was soon seated on the bus, browsing the magazine, waiting for the trip home.
He knew someone had sat down next to him but continued to read the magazine. As the bus backed out of the bay, he looked to his side and saw one of the most beautiful women he'd ever seen. And, she was sitting next to him. She had medium length black hair and her lips were covered with the brightest of red lipstick. At first he felt a little faint, though wasn't sure why.
"Hi. How far are you going?"
"Uhh, well, uhh, I'm going out near the base."
"Good, so am I. It's nice to have some company," she said as she smiled.

As he came through the front door, his mom said,"Johnny, how was your day?"
"Pretty good, Mom."
"What did you do?"
"Oh, you know, the usual. Went to the motorcycle shops. Wow, there were some great motorcycles and I finally got to see an Ariel Square Four."
His mom, smiled. "How were the movies?"
"Pretty good."
"What did you have for lunch, a hot dog, I guess?"
"Yes, Ma'am, I did have a hot dog."
"Well, sounds like you had a pretty good day."
Johnny perked up, "Oh, yeah. I met the nicest lady."
"Yeah, she's kinda lonely, you know, her husband's out to sea."
"She wants me to come over and watch TV with her."
"Yeah, look at this," he said passing his magazine to his mom. "See, she wrote her phone number on my magazine. She didn't have a pen, she had to write it using her lipstick."
"I see," his mom said.
For a couple of weeks Johnny searched everywhere for his magazine. He never did understand how it vanished so quickly.

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