I’ve just seen a face…

But was it a face I used to love? I don’t know, and I can’t decide whether I care. It has been at least five years since I last saw “Hazel” for certain sure. I have pictures, of course, but the confident memory of her face has completely faded away from me, so that now when a car rolls past and I make eye contact with a woman who might be her, that is the best I can do: it might be her, or it might not. I have no longer any way of telling the difference, no internal check to verify her identity against.

It is sort of the opposite of the situation the persona in Green Day’s song “Whatsername” finds himself in. Where he recognises the face of someone he was once involved with, but cannot quite recall her name or other details of their (once shared) past, I lug about a mind crammed full of (sometimes painfully) detailed memories, but with no face to connect them to anymore.

My feelings regarding this are understandably ambivalent. I do not regret any part of the past. I am comfortable now with the choices made, by me and by her —including her (at the time unwelcome) decision to dump me in favour of the fellow who is now her husband. But it is still nice to maintain my connection with my past, my history. And I feel like I really should be able to spot my first love, that I should be able to to pick the first girl I ever kissed out of police lineup if I had to.

Interesting stuff, but not particularly important. That’s why I think about it, I suppose…

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