May, 1978. My father had been dead for less than a week. It was a Saturday night and then next morning I would be on a plane for the first time. Even before my father died, I sensed that something big and scary was happening. That something irreparable was about to happen. Earlier in the spring, I’d looked up at the sky and seen a plane flying over, the contrail lingering, and I felt myself moving across the sky behind it.
My mother let me stay up late and sleep on the pull out couch in the den. There I watched Saturday Night Live for the first time. O.J. Simpson was the guest host. Rickie Lee Jones was the musical guest. She sang this song and the feeling I had been feeling all spring broke wide open in my chest. I would never exist in this moment again as a young girl with a dead father who had never been on a plane. My life was about to change.