I was sixteen that summer, and in trouble...I'll not bore you with the details, but I got sent to a home for "troubled youth" in May, there to spend, who knew how long?
The place was on the grounds of a state hospital-in theory, any one of us could be transferred at eighteen from the Adolescent Rehabilitation Program into an adult ward with a stroke of a pen, a fact we were often reminded of. The place did have an upside, however...it was coed, and that's where I met Susan.
She was fifteen, and looked sorta like the picture above. She was there for the same reason as me-incorrigibility-although she had come from a foster rather than a regular home. I didn't know all her details...she didn't tell, and I didn't ask.
At first, we couldn't stand each other, and, to be honest, I dunno exactly what happened, but suddenly, we were a couple, for a brief span of time, my first relationship.
Were we in love? I dunno...I was sixteen, and I'd never felt like this before. Whatever it was, it was wonderful, and I was a mess when it ended.
About a year later, a friend was able to locate the address of her current foster home, and we wrote back and forth for a while. Her foster father was transferred overseas, and she went back into the system, to somewhere unknown to me. Perhaps she preferred it that way.
Still, after all these years, I still raise a glass to her, and I enjoy her memory....peace, Sunshine.