Word Count: 502
Love Finds a Way
By Peg Scarano
Remember when we were young and foolish – the simple high school pranks; ironing your hair; lying on your back on the bed to zip up your jeans; reading adult books under the blankets with a flashlight; telling your parents you were going to a girlfriend’s house when you were really meeting a boy at the movies; sneaking a beer or a cigarette? – All relatively harmless adolescent activities back in our day, right?
I don’t think I purposely tried to do things to upset the adults in my life. I think I probably ran the consequences of my actions through my immature mind before I actually acted upon a scathingly brilliant idea.
It was a chilly fall weekend of my sophomore year in college. I had plans to catch a ride home to Little Falls from Brockport with a friend of mine so I could visit my boyfriend. At noon on Friday, my friend called to tell me she had a change of plans and was not going home. The bottom dropped out of my world. I hadn’t seen him in a month and was so looking forward to going home. My mind took over.
I got a ride to the gas station on the outskirts of town on the way to the Thruway. I gingerly set my bag down and bravely put my thumb up. After what seemed like an eternity, a man in a pickup truck stopped and asked me which way I was headed. I boldly murmured, “East.” He told me he was going as far as Syracuse. I quietly said, “That would be great, but before I get in your truck, I need to make a phone call to let my boyfriend know I’m on my way and about what time we’ll arrive in Syracuse.” He agreed and waited.
There were no cell phones in 1972. I went into the phone booth, made a collect call to my boyfriend’s house where his younger sister accepted the charges and told me Rock was working and would be home around three. I told her I was hitching home with a man in a gray truck. I gave her the license number and told her I was having him drop me off at Rock’s uncle’s liquor store in Syracuse and that we should be there around 5:30 – please have him pick me up there. And then I prayed.
I prayed she would get the message to Rock and that he was free to drive to Syracuse and that his old clunk of a car would not break down and that this nice guy in the truck was truly a nice guy and not a serial killer.
My prayers were answered. The gentleman was a true gentleman. I was lucky. My reckless act got me to Syracuse safely. Rock was at his uncle’s liquor store waiting, as was his aunt, who read me the riot act. I was relieved until it dawned on me…..How was I going to get back on Sunday?