Wednesday, July 4, 2012

Every 4th of July...

... I think of Lynn at the 7-11 in Richfield, Utah.

Back in 1983 I had attended the 6-Day Course of the est Training in Santa Rosa, Calif., and I was driving back to Denver in a bright yellow 1973 'vette. The weather was beautiful and, after visiting friends in Sacramento, I started east on July 3. Just about  midnight I stopped for gas at the 7-11 on U.S. 50 in Richfield. Due to the holiday, I was stopping for gas every hour (and also for coffee to stay awake).

I was still "wired" from the week-long course I had taken, during which the 100 participants slept only four hours a night, and I said to the clerk when I walked in, "HAPPY FOURTH OF JULY". I think I surprised her a little, because not every customer at midnight was wide awake, and I think she wondered whether she was about to get robbed.

After paying for my gas (that was before pre-pay, even late at night) and buying my coffee, I "chatted up" the clerk, whose name was Lynn (according to her nametag). We were hitting it off, so I asked her if she wanted to run away with me.

She asked who would take care of the store, and I asked the only other customer if she would watch the store until the day manager showed up. She declined.

Then Lynn asked whose car we'd take. I pointed to mine and she asked, "What about my three kids?"

So I asked her what she drove, which was an old pick-up parked off to the side. I said I'd just leave the 'vette and we could go in her truck.

We had a lot of fun talking, and then it was time to go. When I got back to Denver, I sent her a postcard, addressed to "Lynn, c/o 7-11, Richfield, Utah." She got it and wrote back, and we stayed in touch for a couple of years. Then she married again, went back to school, got her nursing degree, and said Good-bye to 7-11.

I hope she is happy and healthy and well. I think of her every July 4th.

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