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Sue Hess

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You Can't Go Home Again
By Sue Hess
Monday, May 20, 2002

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<br>I was probably 14 when I fell in love with him. His name was Bobby and he was the best looking boy in Red Bay.  We were visiting my cousin’s family like we did every year and Bobby lived up this little road, in what we would call a shack, with his mother, his sometimes dad, and his 6 sisters and brothers. People up North would call them poor white trash, but my aunt just called them her neighbors and sent us up to buy some fresh eggs. 
<br>Bobby was 17 that year and he took my breath away when he walked out that old screen door.  I don’t think we heard anything that was said for the next 10 minutes or so, we just stood there and stared until my cousin snapped his fingers in front of my face and reminded me we had to get back. 
<br>In Red Bay, boys bought cars as soon as they were old enough but only drove them at night for some reason, we walked every where we went during the day and Bobby passed his old Mustang and walked down the road with us to my aunt’s house.  We talked about everything we could think of to talk about, just so we could look at each other.  About halfway back to the house, my cousin stopped and lit a joint, passing it to us when he had smoked about half of it in one toke, and we stood there, in the middle of a dirt road, in Red Bay Alabama and fell in love while passing a joint between us.  Maybe it was the dope, maybe it was the magic of a June day when you are young and carefree, but I can’t remember many days in my teens that were happier than that day. 
<br>Bobby left around 6 to get dressed for Saturday night; a big thing in little southern towns and suddenly my aunt’s neighbors became poor white trash again.  She talked until she was blue in the face, warning me about Bobby and how wild he was and what his family was like and I listened politely before jumping in my cousin’s car and heading to the State Line Drive-In to meet Bobby as planned.  We got much better acquainted that evening but I was still 14 and it wasn’t until 2 years later that we became really well acquainted on a blanket down by Bear Creek.  I had already left home but stopped off in Red Bay to tell my cousin about the changes in my life and where I was headed and of course, to say goodbye to Bobby. 
<br>We saw each other twice more after that, with several years and a million changes for us both happening between each meeting but somehow we always ended up on that blanket down by Bear Creek.  Bobby kept getting better looking and his life was getting better each time I saw him, and I finally heard he had married a girl from Tupelo and they had a farm out near Russellville.  After that, Bobby just became a happy memory from my past until this year….
<br>I saw him walk in the supermarket door, and I knew him immediately, God only knows how.  He weighed close to 300 lbs and was wearing a pair of overalls with no shirt; it was not a pretty sight.  He still had the beautiful hair and maybe some of his beautiful teeth, but certainly not the front ones.  He hadn’t shaved in a while and his boots were covered in what I sincerely hoped was mud and his wonderfully sexy voice was gravelly and loud.  I have to admit, I went around three aisles to avoid meeting him and left the store with half of what I went after but I managed not to have to come face to face with the death of one of my prettiest memories.  I had time for a tear or two before reaching my cousin's house and I shed them for Bobby and me, for the past, for broken dreams and lost hopes, then I went in and smiled at my cuz, still the same after all these years, and was grateful that some things never change.

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Reviewed by Barbara Terry 2/20/2005
Thnx for sharing Sue, this was very nice of you to share. I never had a life as a teen, because my mother made sure that I wouldn't. Even though I wasn't really locked up, it was still a state instiution, where you had to work for priveleges to go into town, by yourself. I never had sleepovers, like every other girl did, I wasn't allowed to have a boyfriend, I wasn't allowed to go out whenever I wanted, I just wasn't allowed. So my memories of those days are dark and full of misery, sadness and fears.

As you can tell by my poetry, I still have those fears, sadness and misery, and they will probably never go away. My 4 sisters, who are still living, want nothing to do with me, which is why I still have these fears, misery and sadness.

Very nice sue, Thnx for sharing (crying). May the Lord be with you and at your side always. With much love, peace, & (((HUGS))), your dear friend in Wisconsin,

Barbara Lynn Terry
"If I have to...Then I may as well be."
Reviewed by Roxanne Smolen 4/17/2004
This is a romantic, heartfelt story. I would have liked it to be fleshed out and slowed down a bit so we could fall in love along with her.
Reviewed by William Brownson 6/11/2002
What's young and pretty soon grows old and gray. It's a reality check we all have to face.
Reviewed by John Reilly 5/21/2002
hahahah bobby turned out to be a pig huh
well im not sorry to hear that I have to admit. Funny this 1 made me laugh Sue

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