My First “really big” kiss was a surprise…
In previous Essay No. 61, I shared about how I bought my first car, a 1949 Ford, for $100, from my Sunday school teacher, Joel Horne. I didn’t have a girlfriend yet, but I did notice the girls started getting a lot friendlier when they found out I had my own car.
We lived in Deerfield on Dixie Highway, where the tennis courts are now. One night, I drove my car across the street to Pioneer Park to watch the Lions Club men play softball against a Pompano team. Proud of my first car, I parked close to the bleachers and decided to sit on the front fender to watch the game and simultaneously show off my “new” brown Ford. Sure enough, within five minutes, two girls I’d grown up with came swaggering over.
One of them said “Oh David, is that car yours?” I smiled and nodded affirmatively. “Take us for a ride.”
I said “Ok, jump in.” They both climbed into the front seat. I backed out, being careful not to bump Uncle Jim Butler’s car parked next to me.
“Take us to the beach,” one of them said. So off we went, turning east on Hillsboro Avenue, crossing Federal Highway and over the bridge to the beach where we parked for a few minutes and looked for sand crabs at the wave break.
Then one of the girls said, “I better get back before my parents notice I’m gone.” So we hurried back to the game, where she got out of the car.
The other girl immediately slid right up next to me and said “Let’s go back to the beach, I want to show you a neat place.” Anxious to drive my “new” car some more, I agreed but asked her to move back over to her side of the seat. She did, so I backed out and headed back to the beach. Just as we passed over the Intracoastal bridge, she told me to make a left turn, and then another, which headed us onto a small dirt road surrounded by cabbage palms where Hillsboro Landings is today. I stopped at the Intracoastal waters’ east edge and started to back up. Suddenly, she slid over, grabbed me by the back of my head and planted a big sloppy kiss squarely on my mouth. Astonished, I pushed her away, proceeded to back up, and drove her directly to her home.
On the way home, I explained that I thought of her as a friend, like a sister, not a girlfriend. This didn’t seem to help. When we got to her house, she refused to get out of my car, saying “Kiss me or I won’t get out.”
I told her “No!” and demanded she get out. This went on for about 10 minutes when I gave her my final ultimatum: “Get out now because I’m about to drive home and you’ll have to walk back home alone.” She still refused to get out. So I drove to my house (about three blocks away) with her still in my car. I parked in my usual backyard spot, told her “Good night!” went into my house and went to bed.
I’d only been in bed a few minutes when my mother, who had looked out her bedroom window and saw someone in my car, came to my bedroom and asked, “David, who is that in your car?” I told Mom what had happened. She chuckled; then she asked for my keys and went outside and drove the girl home. When Mom returned, she came to my room and told me I’d done the right thing. I slept well that night, and the girl and I remained just good friends for many years.