College was a big deal in my family. Heading off to college after high school wasn’t an option, it was an expectation.
I was having no part in it.
I got a part-time job working for a loan company in my senior year of high school. Back then loan companies were on every corner, just like mattress stores are today.
I was making good money with the promise of a full-time job after I graduated. Who needed college??
Fear of Missing Out
While I was working and still living at home, my friends were getting ready to head off to college. I suddenly had a change of heart!
I decided that I wanted to get away from home and go to college too. I quit my job and I applied to a few schools and got accepted.
After some soul searching I realized that I only wanted to go because my friends were going. I had zero interest in continuing my education. I just wanted the fun of college.
It was clear to me that going off to school would have just been a waste of my parent’s money.
I was still only 17 years old. Too young to go off to college but wise enough to know that!
Heading to Florida
Instead of heading off to college, I headed to Fort Lauderdale, Florida with two high school friends.
We were going to live there, working as bartenders. After two weeks of no jobs in sight and getting sick and having no means to visit a doctor, I flew back home.
It was a crazy little vacation!
I can’t find any pictures of this summer of my life. Possibly my parents didn’t want to remember it and either no pictures were taken or they were destroyed??
If I find them, I will add them to the post!
Next, I joined the Army
Yes, you read that correctly. In my quest to figure out what to do next with my life, I decided that joining the Army was a good idea.
See the world! Get an Education! Sounded pretty glamorous to me!
I couldn’t officially go until I was 18 years old so I had about a month to really consider the consequences of my actions.
I also met a man! The man! Or so I thought.
Once again, I had made a rash decision and it only took me that one month to realize that it was a really dumb idea.
The Army however had a signed delayed entry commitment from me and basically told me that I had to go.
My parents hired a lawyer to get me out of this situation. The lawyer drafted a statement about the Army coercing a 17-year-old into the armed forces against her will. Which at this point was quite true.
The lawyer took it to the press first and things got crazy. There were TV crews outside our home, outside my office, and calling non-stop on the phone. It was on TV and in the newspapers. A friend from high school contacted me from Germany and said he had read about it there.
My 15 minutes of fame!
The end result was that the United States Government gave me an honorable discharge for the convenience of the government.
I never saw a day in uniform.
I’m not proud of this at all, however, my 17-year-old decisions could have been far worse.
What will the Future Hold
Next time I will share what followed after the crazy summer of 1975!
Peace & Love,
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#1 – The Introduction
#3 – A Lonely Kid
#5 – The Tornado