I'm sure anyone who lived in Bangor, Maine before the Morse Covered Bridge burned down in 1983 has memories of it as mine. Being there was a rite of passage for the youth of Bangor, Maine or at least for the ones I ran around with long ago. It was a perfect place to steal your first kiss, smoke your first cigarette or just hang out with your friends after an exciting day of being downtown. My first cigarette was smoked within the darkness of that covered bridge where prying eyes couldn't scrutinize my actions. After stealing a couple Camel non-filtered cigarettes from my father, I beelined for the bridge. What an experience that was! Instead of turning 50 shades of gray, I turned 50 shades of green. Back then it was a semi hang-out spot for me even though it wasn't anywhere close to my neighborhood. Perhaps that was its allure back then. I could be dark and mysterious in the confines of the Morse Covered Bridge. Although I did do what most people did at the bridge, it wasn't where I had my first kiss. That happened much closer to home.
My first kiss was filled with all the wonderful things it was supposed to be filled with, but it was also filled with a lot of guilt. Somehow I felt like I had betrayed my cousin, Debbie because there I was tucked away under some trees making out with her ex-boyfriend, George. I told myself repeatedly it wasn't like they had just broke up the day before. She had moved on and was with someone new, but the guilt never subsided. And now for the biggest "BUT" of all...but the guilt didn't keep me from wanting to be there or enjoying how he held me as he kissed me.
Many, many years later after reconnecting with George via Facebook, we finally talked about that fateful night at the Truck Yard, an area in the lower Westside of Bangor that was surrounded by Patten Street, Parker Street and the Gas Patch which had so many contaminants/pollutants that should have made me shake in my shoes and glow in the dark, but the only thing that seemed to matter to me that night was getting lost in a moment...but not too lost! As fate would have it, we never got together. I guess the planets weren't aligned right or we both assumed things about the other that wasn't really true. You know how teenage insecurity goes... All I know is that the result of that night did not yield me a boyfriend, but it did yield a very tender memory.
Back in the day, signing autograph books was the rage. We were all rock stars! Legends in our own minds! Hooligans! Scalawags! While thumbing through one of my old autograph books from 1969, I came across the prophetic words he left me to dwell upon from time to time. I don't remember if this was written before or after the Truck Yard incident, but I'm sure truer words were never written.
As with anything I write on here, only first names will be used. The last name is crossed out to protect the guilty. That's my story and I'm sticking to it... The rest of the story about our state of mind that night brought on by a very popular social lubricant will be for another day. Right now, I'll just sit back and savor the memory of our first kiss without all the other hoopla associated with it.