Pilgrimage (Part 1)

[This is first of a two-part post.]

Post-drug bust, I was briefly incarcerated. Which meant grounded at home. Or so the diary seems to say.KoronisCabin78

June 14, 1978’s spare entry: “Wednesday. Did nothing. See?” The next day’s full-page entry reports “things started fresher,” but no word about the parents’ reaction. If I was indeed grounded, I was glad because I got to read my book—Hermann Hesse’s Peter Camenzind, who, along with John Steinbeck, was fast becoming one of my favorite writers.

Dad said I needed a job. I applied for an assembly position at Tonka Toys, where my fellow grads had gotten summer gigs, but it fell through. Buddies Steve and Mike tipped me off to janitorial work at an office complex east of Wayzata. Before I knew it I had joined them: vacuuming floors and emptying office trashcans of rotten-smelly banana peels.

A Disco-Trek visit was planned with Jeff Greene, who must’ve passed muster with the ’rents since he wasn’t with me, Greg and Harvey at the bust. And Skeeze was easily cleared because he’d made a pact with his parents—he was only allowed to play music if he didn’t drink or do drugs. So Skeeze and I made plans that summer to reconnect.

Friday afternoon, June 16, I met up with Greg at the Mound Burger Chef, where he was working. “While he was on break,” the diary says, “we talked about the outcomes from our ordeal on Tuesday night.” Kim’s sister Tracy was also there, so after Greg went back to work, I wandered over and chatted with her and a friend. “Have you talked to Kim lately?” she said. The diary is rich in detail: “Tracy eyed me with a smile, her smile.” Kim was working for a Realtor in Navarre. ‘She’s bored,’ Tracy said.” Seems I needed to pay Kim a visit.

In reality, my hopes for “getting back together with Kim” ended the summer of 1977 at Camp Koronis. After all, Greene and I were meeting girls while dancing at Disco-Trek, when I wasn’t working nights. Mom’s folks came up for a visit; Grandpa Adams setting up the annual slide show on June 18. Just as we’d started, the phone rang and Brian ran to get it. “Mike,” he said. “It’s for you.” When I picked up, a voice on the other end said, “Mike? Do you know who this is?”

It was Kim, of course. “She said she heard about my escapade with the cops on Tuesday night. She seemed mad for a while (I guess it shows how much she really cares for me—really!) She said she also heard that I was an alcoholic-like drinker, but I told her to believe me—I’m forever fine.” Interesting that came up, as no one, even the Family Project, had confronted me with the question before. It was a heady conversation. We talked about our summer jobs and her boyfriend Jon. She revealed she wasn’t going to Camp Koronis that year, even while I’d planned a pilgrimage back, with Skeeze joining me.

I’d missed most of the slide show, hanging up around 10:30. The entry concludes with an interesting detail. Mom asked who had called. “‘Kim,’ I said. ‘Why?’ [she replied].”

Why indeed.

Wednesday morning, June 21, my brother and his friend left for camp. I’d packed my bag and threw a tent in Mom’s car. The Friday before leaving I called Skeeze to see if he was ready to hit the road. But his mother wouldn’t let him go, saying he’d come down with a cold.

I’d have to make the journey on my own.

~ by completelyinthedark on March 29, 2013.

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