Keys to My Past

I saw another one of those 5 things you don’t know about me memes. Seems I’m disinclined to come up with five, though.

As I may have mentioned, when I was 17, I worked at a summer camp in northern Pennsylvania, mowing lawns, emptying mouse traps and the like. Lots of lawn mowing, so much so that I dreamed about it, and had a bizarre deja vu experience. It was a dreadful place that promised us X amount of money and ended up shortchanging everyone. My girlfriend at the time had worked there in a previous year and practically begged me not to go; a week after I got there, she too went to work there again in the dining room. Ah, young love.

One of my jobs was to fill up the soda machine with Pepsi products. After I left, I realized that I still had the special key to open the machine. I didn’t take it intentionally, but I was disinclined to send it back – and they never asked.

Several months later, I had the key in my pocket, and I was at an ARCO or Mobil gasoline station near my house that was closed for the night; there was a time when gas stations actually closed. The station had a Pepsi machine in front. I tried the key; it worked! I never stole any soda from station, but at least one other time, I used the key to see that it still worked, and it did.

Eventually, I went away to college, and my life. I came across a key chain last week that contained keys to padlocks long gone, an office key from where I worked in 1978 and a bunch of identifiable keys. Oh, yes, and that Pepsi machine key. I finally threw them all away. It was, after all this time, surprisingly easy now, when it hadn’t been the last time I came across that key chain, for some reason.

Yet I still wonder if that key would have still worked.

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