I didn’t have it anyway, I was going to a new post, and didn’t know it yet. If she really wanted to get in touch with me, she could have called my mom. She didn’t, and that was the end of it. I had closure, at last. I knew why those letters were returned to me. It was, had to be, her over protective aunts, they never really liked me. She was going to medical school, and I…well to them I wasn’t good enough.
Over the years I tried to quit, really I used to quit all the time. When the butts ran out, I quit. Civilian smokes costs about .60 cents a pack at the time. I couldn’t afford it. So I quit. Mom was proud, and I really thought I was through with the habit. Little did I know the habit is almost as bad a coke jones, if not worse. I had about a week, before my leave was up, and no smokes. But, I must admit I bummed my old man’s Newports from to time. It was that bad.
Eventually my leave was up. When the time came for me to leave, the whole family, eight of us, crammed into pop’s old Chevy, and took me to Idlewild, as it was known back then. You get eight people into your car today, and you can get a bunch of no seatbelt tickets. When we got there, the old man slipped me a pack of Marlborros, and says:
“I na ya ain’t quit yet, so hea, enjoy ya flight!”
That I did, we had a lay over at Chicago, and when the plane took off, one of the stewardesses called me. She said they wanted to check my pass.