When I was a senior in high school, my boyfriend worked at a 7-11. He worked graveyard shifts, but he wouldn't sell me beer. Instead, I went to the store after I was done with friends, buzzed, and wandered around the aisles. I should have known then the person who constantly checks is the person with a guilty conscience.
The first time I did it, he didn't get it. I walked down aisles filled with Doritos and Lay's, my arms spread wide singing, "I'm leavin' on a jet plane..."
"What are you doing?" he asked.
I kept singing, "don't know when I'll be back again. "
"Are you leaving?" he asked.
"It's a song."
I looked at him all disheveled in his red 7-11 apron and wondered what I was doing here. It was 4am. The night was turning indigo. Maybe it was time to go.
"I don't like it."
"It's just a song," I answered. "But it's late." I reached for my small clutch on the counter.
I left quickly with just a peck on the lips.
After that, each time I wanted to leave I opened my arms wide and sang the song. "I'm leavin' on a jet plane. I don't know when I'll be back again." I let my fingers graze along the edges of the chip and gum displays. They hesitated
My arms became wide wings that navigated the aisles of the 7-11 out into the parking lot, until they finally took off and never landed there again.