I know what you’re thinking, and you are partly right — I was writing ‘I Love’ on the train carriage window, making him think I was going to finish with ‘you’.
Instead, I wrote ‘chocolate’.
I wasn’t being mean, he liked my sense of humour.
In retrospect, I probably should have written the letters in ‘mirror image’ so he could see more clearly what I was writing, but I knew he was a smart fellow and would work it out. Besides, writing ‘mirror image’ is harder than you might think.
My girlfriend took the photo, and I think I look good. I was certainly feeling good on that blustery day. I should have been sad, I suppose, but in my youthful foolish way, I thought I was enveloped by the beginning of a wonderful adventure. I thought he would follow me all the way to the other side of this vast country.
He looks so handsome with his coat collar turned up — wistful, wondering why I don’t look as sad as he was feeling.
He didn’t follow me, but we did exchange letters for a while.
He found someone else, and it broke my inexperienced heart.
My heart healed, and I found happiness, of a sort, but I sometimes wonder what might have happened if I hadn’t got on that train, had written something different on that window.
My girlfriend and I are still good friends. She had an extra copy of this photo made for me, and we get it out from time to time and reminisce.
I’ve never been tempted to write on windows since that day.