Before I went home for Thanksgiving I had one last meeting with Diana. It was brief. She came back after the two week suspension to pack up her stuff and move home. She had decided to transfer rather than deal with what would happen if another policy infraction took place. I'm pretty certain she wasn't even going to say good bye but I ran into her at the elevator. I helped her load the car. A hug. A kiss on the cheek. Mutual well-wishes. Never saw her again. I don't believe I ever heard where she ended up going to school.
Jackie borrowed Beth's Mustang to come down for the concert in December. She also brought a friend along. You have to understand that Jackie didn't have a lot of girlfriends. Frankly, she got along with guys better than other girls-- a fact I understand better in hindsight than I did at the time. Her best friend Sherry was off at school and most of the people she worked with were older. But, she had a girlfriend from high school days who had a sister who went to my university and so they both were going to stay at that girl's apartment off campus. That was problem number one for Wil. See, I was pretty sure Jackie could stay in my room without anybody ratting us out to Jill the RA. And, even if they did, Jill was a friend. She would be cool, right? It isn't like we would be doing anything illegal in the room. We would just be, um, sleeping together. But, I guess we actually wouldn't be, would we, since Jackie would be staying off campus. Great.
Oh well, at least we would be together most of the time she was visiting. We did get to spend a good deal of time together. And we hung out with some of my friends. She was very quiet whenever anybody from my college world was around which I didn't think much about. She was quiet when we were alone-- which was not at all like Jackie. That bothered me a bit. Everything just seemed a full bubble off plumb. The concert was great. Roxy Music opened which I enjoyed. Jethro Tull was bombastic and Jackie enjoyed the show. Sunday morning the Mustang was ready to head north. We hugged good-bye briefly and had an uncustomary quick kiss which I chalked up to our audience of her friend. And then Jackie said, "Love ya!" and jumped behind the wheel. Off they went.
I got up to the room and took out a piece of paper.
What the hell is that? "Love ya" is what girls say to each other around here when one of them has to go to class.
Please tell me what is going on. I wish you'd had a better time down here. It was nice to see you.
Every day through the next two weeks I checked my mailbox at the commons hoping to hear something from her. I checked the whiteboard next to the hall phone constantly to see if anyone had taken a message for me. Nothing. I got home for Christmas break and my parents wondered why I wasn't going over to see Jackie right away. I told them what I hated to admit to myself. It was over. I never heard from her again.
Until 24 and a half years later.
Yes, that's right, 24 and a half years later Jackie wrote back to me.