My right hand reached for the black knob that controlled the radio stations.
Static. The shadow of the overpass that I was driving under reminded me of the poor signals in this town. All the familiarity and nostalgia rushed through my head as I came to the only stoplight for miles. How typical, I thought, for the main street of Woodlands, my hometown, to be the place in which a car that had roamed for miles free was forced to a halt. Summer would be here soon, and all the freedom I experienced in the big city during university would also come slamming down on the breaks as soon as I dropped my suitcase on the floor of my childhood bedroom.
There, on the nightstand beside my bed would be the picture of you which I did not have the courage to take down before I left. There, I would turn on my radio, this time hoping for static. But instead the song, our song, would be playing on one of the only stations our town got. And there, I would lie on my bed and stare up at the ceiling wondering if you were listening to the radio play our song too. Or maybe you would just hear static. Fuzzy, confusing, drowning-out-the-noise static.
You don’t hear laughter and late night ice cream runs. You don’t hear windows down and two lane highways. You turned the station in the middle of the greatest song we’d ever heard, and in place you made a mixtape of static and sorrow.
Now I sit up and turn off the song. I pick up the picture and toss it in the trash bin. My right hand once again reaches for the knob and flips to a new station.
Vibrant, fresh music slips out the speakers. I print out a new picture of the New York skyline. And I promise to never flip to FM 92.0 again, or settle for a place where static takes the spot where songs should be.
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