Saturday morning

It is Saturday morning. I am sitting at my desk, having a coffee,checking my mail, when a ghost from the past pops up. A message on “Stayfriends”,  just a “hi, saw-your-profile-and-thought-I get-in-touch” message. At first I don’t have a clue who that person could be, after all, it is about  forty years ago, that we knew each other. But slowly there are memories coming up of the time around 1973/1975 when I was a teenager in a then small town called Lüneburg.

At that time we had to attend school on Saturdays. Usually we had lessons from 08:00 – 11.30 am.

As soon as school was finished everybody would try to get to the town center as quickly as possible. Some of the boys had small mopeds, looking like motorbikes, usually Kreidlers or Zündapps. If one of us girls could get a ride into town on one of those, we felt really tough. Once, I remember, one of the boys took me and myfriend Sabine onto his bike. None of us wore helmets of course and how we all fitted onto those tiny machines  is a riddle to me up  today. It remember wearing my favorite sweater that day, bright green, tight and sliding up showing my bellybutton when moving,

Once we got into town we would stroll along the pedestrian zone checking out who else was hanging out. Most of the time we all ended up in a pub called “Illert”.It doesn’t exist anymore.

Coming into “Illerts”  there was a long bar with some tables across from it. In the back was a second, larger room, and here the kids from my school gathered. Here I drank my first beer and had my first cigarette. I was thirteen then and felt very grown-up.

My friends and I  t hoped to catch a glimpse at the boys we had a crush on, praying to be noticed and maybe, just maybe be invited to one of their partys. There was always a party somewhere on Saturday night and not being invited anywhere was a disaster.

At that time it was fashionable to have a party-room in the cellar. Some parents didn’t have one, and  in that case we  just put some posters on the wall, mattresses on the floor, and a tape recorder on a table.  The lights were low.

Each party had the same procedure: about 15 to 20 kids standing around, checking who was there, circling around each other, making eye contact. The music fast, the first ones dancing by themselves, slowly being joined by others until couples were forming. After some time the music moved from “Crocodile Rock” to something slower until finally couples were clinging to each other, swaying to the music, the lights as low as possible.   There were always more boys than girls and the ones not finding someone would find comfort in the “Schnaps” they had smuggled in.

You could be sure that at this stage of the party a father or mother would show up, turn on the lights and send us home. We didn’t mind, as we were young and not ready to take things any further.

It was at one of these parties I had my very first kiss. His name was Klaus and he was not the one I had a crush on. I had almost forgotten this party, until today, when his message popped up. Will I answer him? Yes, why not. He is part of my history, and I am curious how his life developed. After all, for about a week we were going out with each other when I was thirteen.

View onto the town I grew up in
View onto the town I grew up in
This is the kind of bike we felt was really tough then.
This is the kind of bike we felt was really tough then.

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