Ellen (ennienyc) wrote,

Goodbye to old friends

The summer of 1969 was drawing to a close, and it was time to say goodbye before going our separate ways to college.

As it turned out, I'm still in touch with many of these people. But it wouldn't be the same, and we knew it as we gathered for one last party.

The Doors sang,
Summer's almost gone
Summer's almost gone
We had some good times
But they're gone

Thursday, August 28, 1969
[walked to A&S with my cousins] Linda bought a Gordon Lightfoot record at Deena and Doreen's urging [Canadians!]. We played Mad Libs again. It was funny, but nothing can top the line of yesterday about Bobo showing Barbie his ski slope and her mistaking it for an early American toenail.

[another afternoon of walking and shopping. I ended up not inviting my sister and cousins to the party, which in hindsight was wrong - it would have been fine] C came at 8:30 to drive me to the party. Incredibly, she enters a whole new world in 6 days. We got there [descriptions of who was there]. The Peter, Paul & Mary album we have played. With his foot, J picked up C's pocketbook and said her old report cards must be there. He brought out a puzzle of black and white op art and said we'd do it upstairs.

We went to J's room and started doing the puzzle. [Various people joined us, including E's cousin D who went to Columbia] D asked for a piece with doohickeys on it in black and white. He said Johnson Hall was full of old ladies, though the food was great. A radio was playing throughout - first WCBS and then WABC, both FM [WABC-FM is now WPLJ]. J occasionally went downstairs to see who was there.

B came up to say goodbye. She leaves Tuesday (!). When she left, she said, "If I don't see you again (she paused), it's been nice!" [I just saw her at the reunion] I was so wrapped up that the impact of farewells didn't hit me. D is majoring in government by elimination ("eliminate Nixon, eliminate Romney," he punned). We could hear M and K's shouts from downstairs.

J was absent for a long time, and when J2 went down, she found the 4 of us were the only ones left in the house. J's car was gone too! When he finally came back, he told us he had been to M's house (some sort of impromptu gathering) and wasn't too crazy about having to drive us home. D refused another lift before, assuming I would have to get home some way and he would come along [he was staying next door]. J suggested we take a nice long walk or sleep over. He threatened not to take us home unless we cleaned the house first, but we left after my few attempts to discard potato chip bags and loose pretzels. J shot at us with a water pistol. In the car, he figured he'd have to drive 5 miles before returning home. D was dropped off separately. All the outside lights were on here and J yelled that I was home and not to worry anymore, before speeding away.

No one heard J's call. Daddy was asleep and Mommy in the shower. I talked a bit with Deena and Doreen, then Mommy, then Deena again. I asked what parties in Montreal are like and she said they're often wild, but she has fun. Mommy says I should decide for myself whether to go to J's to finish the puzzle tomorrow night, or to Canada.

Friday, August 29, 1969

Linda woke me at 11:30, screaming we were leaving to drive to Montreal in a half hour, and I said I probably wasn't going. Daddy came home and I told him I didn't want to go; he said I didn't have to. Mommy said it wasn't all that important whether I went or not. We started a game of Mad Libs and when Daddy announced his decision to go right then, Deena and Doreen looked shocked that I couldn't finish the game because I wasn't going. I helped bring their bags to the car.

Inside, it felt strange. I got a letter from Barnard: my program was approved and I got exemption in Spanish. I tried writing to my sponsor but wasn't involved enough to do it well. I called J and after I told him I wasn't going to Canada, asked him if he'd be doing the puzzle tonight. He said to come between 8 and 9. He invited R over for tonight.

[called N]We talked of the strangeness of NOT GOING the first day of school. That first day of being a senior is so clear in my mind. Only the first day will be traumatic to N; to me, every day I sleep late while Linda arises early will be strange. Of course, after a year or two, college's opening will be a blah thing to us.

Mommy drove me to J's and told me to come back if I was the only one there. With that, D came up the walk, singing. J greeted me with the news that he just baked a cake. I looked at the cake in the kitchen, as J carefully wrapped it. Then we went upstairs and he produced the puzzle from under his bed. We worked with WABC-FM Beatle-Stone weekend in the background. R came. J forced me to eat a chunk of the cake, which was good. "Ess Ess Mein Kindt," he said, placing ginger ale in front of me. J went down to make a salad, which we ate in the other room, and watched "Casablanca" [my first time]. At first I didn't know what was going on, but I was soon absorbed in the plot.

J said these 8:30 a.m. to 2 a.m. days were getting to him, and we brought the salad stuff downstairs. In the garage were shopping carts his mother didn't really steal, but borrows for extended periods from Bohack and Daitch. She rotates them. Last night, J locked himself out and had to climb in through the den windows. Dropping D off separately again, he wondered if the P's ever sleep. [The puzzle later got pasted together and framed.]

Tags: 1969

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