I was looking forward to spending the summer Maggie.

Maggie went to school in Eugene this school year while I lived in Portland. I waited all year for her to return, so we could be together this summer and every season in the future. But a summer job was offered to her in Alaska, and she took it. She left in a car earlier this summer with two men.

This isn’t the first time I’ve been left in my life.

The first girl I remember liking was Brianne. We met in second grade. For all of elementary school it seems I remember chasing Brianne. I’d walk her home, and sometimes I called her on the telephone. After fifth grad, though, her mom moved her and her brother Ty to another school district in another neighborhood (one beyond biking distance). I once saw her at a high school party. She remembered my friend Brett, but not me.

When I was in middle school, I met a Mandy and asked her to the movie Surf Ninjas. We started to talk on the phone, and in one conversation she told me her mom got a job in state of Washington and that she was moving soon, which she eventually did. One day she was there, the next she was gone. We didn’t get to grow old together. Holding hands and awkward kisses would be all we would have. I wonder where she is now.

In high school, the girlfriend I had (I had only one) was named Marci. Marci left me for New York City after we graduated. She wanted to be an actress. We had broken up before she left. (She ended it with me and slept with at least two of my friends.) We had something before, however, and I tried to have something with her when came back. If you ask me now about her, if it was her sleeping with other people or going New York that ended our relationship, I’ll tell you she left me for New York.

I’ve been left for plenty of place names. The one girlfriend I had in college left me for three different place names. She studied abroad in Paris the semester after we met. We vowed to stay together. She came back, and we dated for another year and a half before she left me for Champaign-Urbana, and then to Seattle for good.

I left a girl for the place name I currently live in. I left Albuquerque just after I started seeing Morgan. When I had told her I was moving to Portland (someone had told her already), she cried. How could you? Morgan asked, I was just starting to like you. I liked her too but not as much as I liked Change.

I forgot to mention that my brother lives in Alaska. I think I encouraged Maggie to go there because I wanted to go there. I think she thought I was going with her. I wanted to but I didn’t make any promises. In the end I decided I couldn't leave my job and my house. That I wouldn't know what to do when I got there. And I wouldn't know what to do when I got back.

I was looking forward to spending the summer with Maggie, I’ve said the several times I’ve been asked how I feel about my girlfriend leaving me for Alaska. She didn’t leave me for Alaska, I say, I didn’t go with her.