The Morning After
It was the summer of ’67. What a summer it was. I was the head lifeguard at Conference Point Camp. The camp was known as a family vacation identify on the shores of Lake Geneva. But, it was that summer and the romance that ensued that stands out in memory already after all these years. Time has a way of healing broken hearts. And, however I kept thinking about what could have been. Back then my future was pretty well mapped out. But, sure enough the unexpected always has a way of interrupting ones path in life. That unexpected encounter happened so quickly, knocked me for a loop as they say. Her infectious smile held me captive in ways I can’t explain. It was like a trace, so fixated on her every move. When people say love at first sight is a rarity at best, however, I could tell a mutual fondness almost immediately.
For two short weeks we were at each others side. The night before the morning after under a moon lit sky we walked hand in hand while our feet were sliding by the sand. The gentle groups were rolling in on the shore equaled the rhythm when lovers hearts beat. As we kissed goodnight I never knew it would be the last. Slowly she walked away waving goodbye. That afterglow kept me warm all by the night. The morning after the rain kept pouring down. The call of duty beckoned me to come on down. Though no swimmer came down to the lake I sat their waiting as the rain ricocheted off the lake when information came back to me that my love was gone. Not a information and not a trace. Her family had left in the middle of the night.
The rhythm of the falling rain hid my tears of anguish, sorrow and grief. The breaking of the heart when I was so sure our love would last tore me apart. The relationships that followed for the next five years were all cut short by the memory of that love of that summer of ’67. As time past the heart was healed but her memory nevertheless lingers in conscious thought.
More the 50 years later as I look back I was blessed with a life that has known ecstasy of love and the agony of broken hearts. For me though I moved on from that summer of the great love that was never to be. I keep thinking that when you are a young man the eagerness of falling in love only spurs the spontaneity of your actions and in most situations blinds one to when the unexpected happens. Remembering that morning after has stayed with me already after all these years. And, when it rains at dawns early light always brings me back to that summer of a great love that didn’t last.