Memories: Where were you when...?
I’m shopping in Lincoln, Nebraska, in the middle of our annual Christmas shopping tradition. The mall is decorated in glitter and red and green. The air is crisp and festive. My sister has been inside a store, and I am waiting for her. I see her now. Her face is serious, much different from when she went in. John Lennon is dead, she tells me.
My heart stops. No. This can’t be true. My whole childhood flashes before my eyes. Beatles notebooks. Beatles lunch boxes. Beatles posters. Beatles magazines. Beatles dolls. Beatles 45s. Beatles albums. Beatles.
All I can do is hug my sister and try to breathe. John Lennon is dead. Shot by a deranged fan. Our shopping day has come to an abrupt end. I don’t even want to continue with our plans, but somehow I need to go to the . . .
Grove. I meet my college girlfriends at our favorite hangout, The Grove. I need to be with them and to see familiar faces of Grove regulars. The mood is somber tonight, not the usual loud rock and roll feel. Everyone is talking about John—favorite songs, favorite albums. John Lennon songs are softly playing from the stage. Give Peace a Chance. Starting Over. Mind Games. Instant Karma.
Nothing will ever be the same.