There were practice fields at the high school, with dugouts and everything. Maybe they used to play real games there before my time.
The fields were at an end of the campus I spent little time in; places to practice sports, the auto-shop bays, and the ROTC range. No surprise then, that I was only ever in the dugout once in my life. We were both supposed to be in class by the time you showed up. I was waiting nervously, I’d had to sneak through a chained gate to get onto the field and was worried we’d be seen. I knew you had to sneak past the same security and liked imagining you sharing the butterflies in my belly.
The longhairs used to play hookey and smoke cigarettes in the dugouts, the reason for the chained gate and butts on the ground. Neither of us had any cigarettes, but you had a flower-print bra with thick straps and I had a teenage curiosity. You with your shirt off, outside and all… sun on forbidden skin is really something. So what if we only had five minutes before the “good kid” in each of us kicked-in, pulling us both back to class after hands came above waistbands, buttons buttoned, and hair straightened.
Amazing what kids can do with a few minutes between classes; the magic of equal parts fifteen, ideas, means, and gumption.