Sunday, June 26, 2011

Doubleheader: Blasts from the Past

A short trip to the local grocery store this afternoon resulted in more than a few cans of soup and a loaf of bread. Fortunately, memories are free.

I spotted Karen as she passed right in front of me. Maybe just better to head down another aisle, I thought.

I was a dirt-poor student in my second year of graduate school. Karen and I were in the same campus service club. She was very attractive and had a fun personality. However, she had been dating Dave -- a rich guy and Mr. Party Central. As far as I knew, they were not dating each other exclusively. Karen seemed to show some interest in me, and I kept hoping that perhaps an opportunity might arise. The opportunity came.

After an evening club meeting, Karen announced "I'm heading back to my place for a few beers -- anybody want to come?" I was one of a few people in the area, and thought that this was a primo invitation --- for me! I agreed and went back to Karen's place with her. A few beers later and it was time to make my move. Success!

After a relatively innocent passion session, I sat back and said "I had a feeling this was going to happen." Much to my surprise, Karen answered "Well, it was a surprise to me." Damn.

I took Karen out on a real date -- to a local popular Chinese restaurant  -- and had a good time. However, he date cost me every spare cent I had. I knew that she would still probably continue dating Dave. So ... for the first -- and last -- time in my life, I let a relationship go for purely economic reasons.

We bumped into each other other a few minutes after I spotted her, and we had a very nice conversation. Her daughter soon joined us, and we talked about the excitement of the daughter's upcoming first year in college. I wished the girl well and then said goodbye to her mom. I wondered how much, if any, story telling happened after I left.

I thought I spotted Amanda, but I wasn't sure it was her. She had changed somewhat over the years.

I had recently started a new job. Amanda came in with her mother, seeking my professional assistance. Amanda was quite attractive, bright, and personable, but had a bad experience at her first college. She was determined to get off to a better start the second time around.

She got herself back into good academic standing, then transferred to another school. We had developed a warm relationship, and I was happy to see her move on. Several years later, she was back and again needed my assistance. I was able to help her again, and then she was gone.

I run into Amanda every few years. She's changed a little as we all do. It always takes me a few seconds to make sure it is her, but her warm smile and friendly "hi" usually confirm it. She appears to be doing well, and I always like to think that I played at least some small part in her success. In my profession, it is not unusual to be unsure if you really helped someone. Sometimes, though, you get a pretty good idea.

I paid for my groceries and headed back home. Sometimes memories just make you feel ready to face the challenges of the day.


Blogger Memphis MOJO said...

Good stories.

9:52 PM  

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