Good Morning All!
Samuel Hitchcat here with a Saturday short story for your entertainment. Not one of those spine-tinglers to be sure but something for the romantic in us all – after all we just celebrated Valentine’s Day – even a serious guy like me can squeeze out a bit of romance when necessary………
So without further word, may I present “Lost Time”, a short story by my Mom!
Time changes many things, but there’s one thing which in the best of all worlds, can withstand time’s relentless damage. That is deep and abiding love.
Emily believed that with all her heart, so it was with that faith planted firmly in her mind that she stood waiting for the passengers to disembark from Flight 342 which had just arrived from Los Angeles.
For the hundredth time she glanced at her reflection in the mirrored wall in the elegant First Class lounge and wondered if he would remember her after all these years. Most of all she wondered if she would know from the look in his eyes if he felt the same as she did after forty years apart.
Forty years had passed since she had stood in the middle of the street and watched him ride off on his motorcycle with his small bag of possessions strapped on the seat behind him. Her tears had flowed with abandon as she waved a farewell to her first love.
He had been twenty and she was eighteen. She’d met him at a party at a friend’s house right after graduation. Actually he had “crashed” the party with some of his friends, and as he was being escorted out the front door by her friend’s father, their eyes met across the room. He’d winked, and she’d felt like she was going to faint. Simple as that. She’d gone outside to get a breath of fresh air and he was standing there by the gate in the fence. He’d known she would come outside. They never got around to discussing the strangeness of that fact, but the magnetism between them never weakened.
He showed her his motorcycle – his pride and joy. All she knew about motorcycles was that they were noisy and whenever she was with her Dad and they spotted one he’d tell her to stay away from them and their riders – that they were “bad news”.
He didn’t make her feel like he was “bad news” though….in fact he made her feel things she didn’t know were possible to feel. Of course she knew after all these years that every new experience feels like that when you are eighteen.
He’d offered her a ride, and she hadn’t even hesitated for one second before hiking up her crinoline puffed-out skirt and sitting on the back of his sleek red motorcycle, her arms wrapped around his chest, feeling his heartbeat matching hers. It had been the ride of her life and had changed her life forever.
She had to sneak out to meet him places but her parents never caught her once that whole summer. She lost touch with her friends, ignored her family, told outrageous lies to her trusting parents to be able to stay out late, and felt like she was walking on the edge of a dangerous cliff from the excitement of it all.
They had only five months together – five short but intense months. His family had to move because they lost their home when his father lost his job. They were going to go to Ohio and live with his mother’s family. He wanted to stay behind to be with her but his father was ill and his mother depended on him so. He had to go. He had to leave.
Their last night together was spent with her crying and him holding her and promising to send for her the minute things settled down. She believed that with all her heart – the same heart that felt like it had cracked when he rode off on his motorcycle that night.
She didn’t hear from him again – but she never forgot him even though she married and had the distraction of raising three kids, and becoming divorced from her husband after he found someone else.
Then last week she had gone online to check her email. Her kids weren’t too good about staying in touch but she expected them to live their own lives and looked forward to their infrequent, but news-filled emails. In her inbox was an email from an unknown address but the subject was “Hello Red”. “Red” had been his nickname for her because of her long, curly red hair. She’d hesitated for a moment before clicking on it to read.
I hope you remember me because I most certainly remember you. Every time I tried to move toward you something or someone would put a stumbling block or hurdle in my path. Time passed and I found my life became too complicated to feel I could reach out to you – until now. I recently became a widower and having gone through that experience made me realize I’d lost track of time. I’d like to get some of that back – time is precious and should not be wasted.
Write if you wish, but I would understand if you didn’t. I should have figured out a way to send for you all those years ago because I know now, like I felt then, that we would have been very happy together.”
As she finished the email she felt the teardrops hitting her fingers on the keyboard. If only he had sent for her back then – what would their life have been like? Being so young she hadn’t really been mad that he’d forgotten her – she just moved on. But the fact remained that she knew she’d always love him. She still felt that love, and felt it move her fingers to hit “Reply” and further move them to send him a brief note with her telephone number included.
When the phone rang twenty minutes after she hit “Send” on the keyboard, she knew it was him before she picked up the receiver. They talked for three hours. She felt eighteen again and he sounded exactly the way she remembered.
He said he would love to see her and they set a date. He would fly in from Los Angeles and they’d just take it from there.
All of this flashed through her mind as Emily watched a family with four small children, two of whom were crying, walk down the long corridor from the plane into the waiting room. Other people came down the corridor – lots of them in fact. Then some stewardesses, young and laughing and pulling their little suitcases along.
Then, just when she decided he’d changed his mind and wasn’t coming after all, she saw him coming toward her down the corridor. He looked tall and very handsome in his uniform. He smiled broadly and his gray hair shined in the light like spun silver. He had the same twinkle in his eyes, and the same smile and when he reached out to her and picked her up and spun her around she fell in love all over again with the pilot of Flight 342 from Los Angeles. He always did like adventure…..and that was just one of the things Emily knew she’d always love about him as they traveled together through the rest of their days. Making up for lost time.
Sam’s Mom (and a very sleepy Sammy too)