After I got to know her better and was able to share that part of her life with her, I was able to understand how important streaking was to Yvonne. It turned out that she went out to streak at least twice per week. It was more than just “stress relief”. Streaking was her secret life, an obsession that she herself could not begin to explain or fully understand.
The goal of Yvonne’s streaking was not exactly exhibitionism. The only purpose of her running naked was to run naked. She enjoyed the sensation of being nude outside and loved the feeling the cool night air blowing against her exposed body. She was not out to deliberately shock or offend anyone. She knew that people would see her, but she did what she could to keep that to a minimum.
With a lot of people streaking is something spontaneous, quick, and done with no planning. It wasn’t that way with Yvonne. If she was planning to streak through a new area, she always She always plotted her route ahead of time and scouted it out the day before, looking for places to hide and escape routes in case anything went wrong. She programmed coordinates into her cell phone to avoid getting lost, especially if she had to bail for a few minutes and move several blocks away if she was worried about getting caught. As long as she had her phone, she could easily find her way back and continue as soon as the danger had passed. She had to carefully plan her routes, because she loved to go to new places, take risks, and push the envelope.
She was totally not interested in short runs around the block or a quick dash through a park; not interested a quick five or ten-minutes and immediately putting her clothes back on. She was hard-core. She wanted to be out as long as possible, run as far as possible, and explore different places while being totally exposed. A real streak for her was never less than two hours and “didn’t count” if she didn’t go at least three miles away from her starting point.
The most important rule she set for herself was that she never took any clothes with her while running. She always started by finding a secure place to hide whatever she was wearing, completely stripped, and took off with nothing but her cell phone in her hand. As she put it: “If you carry clothes with you when you’re streaking, that’s cheating. The point is to have an experience that you got no choice but to finish.”
She always took a few selfies and at least one full-body picture of herself using the cell phone’s timer on each expedition. Usually the timed picture was taken at her turn-around point, the spot that was farthest from where she had hidden her clothes. She had long since learned how to set the phone so it would take good pictures, no matter how dark it was where she posed. But with me coming along, “Now I’m not gonna have to worry about setting the phone anymore. You’re gonna take the pictures.”
After that first night, I always went with Yvonne whenever she streaked. Streaking with her was the hardest thing I ever did, but I wouldn’t have traded it for anything. It was strange, with all the fear, pain, fatigue and excitement, I never felt more alive than I did when I was with her.
Yvonne was a much better runner than me. She ran fast and she could go miles without stopping. I still think she should have joined the track team. If she had done that, I know she would have been one of the District’s best long-distance runners. It took everything I had in me to keep up with her. There were times I got mad that she was in such great shape, but I couldn’t say anything. The problem wasn’t that she was too fast; it was that I was too slow. However, she was incredibly patient with me. I think it was because she was so grateful to have someone the share her streaking with that she totally ignored my bad running. And, over time, with all the practice I was getting, I did become much better.
Typically we’d run around 10 miles in an outing. Sometimes it was more. A few times we did 15 miles and were out nearly all night. She let me take breaks to get my breath back, then she’d take off again and I’d have to keep up.
Even though Yvonne was experienced and I could leave the decisions and planning the routes to her, I was always terrified whenever we set out. But then, as I struggled to keep up with her, I soon forgot about being scared or embarrassed, because I was so winded.
Yvonne took our streaking adventures to a whole new level three weeks after I started going out with her. Before we went out, I noticed her exchanging texts with someone on her cell phone. I could tell she was very excited about something, but she didn’t want to tell me what it was. I later found out she wasn’t sure until the last moment that we’d actually be able to have the adventure she was planning, so she didn’t want to let me know anything until she was sure it was going to happen.
We ran to Sutter’s Park through an alternate route that was longer, but avoided both the cul-de-sac and the open area along 97th streets. When we got to Sutter’s Park we found a shaded area and made-out for a couple of minutes. I was getting aroused feeling her hands on my body, when her phone rang. She picked up:
“So, Mr. Galloway, you’re gonna be there just by yourself tonight?”
I could faintly hear a man’s voice:
“Sure thing, Missy. I’m here ’till six. Ain’t gonna be no one else here. And I got a job for ya, if ya’ll wanna do some climbin’.”
“Thanks! We’ll be over in a bit.”
“What’s… going on…”
“Something awesome! We’re going to the Newberg Street construction site! Come-on!”
“A construction site?”
“Yes! This is gonna be epic!”
We went through the tunnel and cut north along some shaded streets with gated condo units on either side. There were cars parked along the sidewalk that shielded us from being seen by people driving down the street. It was strange to think, we were running only a few feet away from all those people driving by, and they had no clue two naked girls were running along the sidewalk.
We crossed a deserted street and ran along some construction fencing to a gate that was left unlocked. There were “No trespassing” signs posted every few feet, but it was obvious we were going to be trespassing. Yvonne lifted the latch and we went through. She led me to a workers’ shed, where an old man dressed in construction over-all’s was waiting. He smiled when he saw Yvonne, as though he was seeing a close friend.
“He-ya Missy. Got your little friend with ya, I see.”
“Yeah, this is Christina. Christina, this is Mr. Galloway.”
I took a deep breath. Yes, I remembered Mr. Galloway. He was the school janitor before he retired two years before, when Yvonne and I were sophomores in high school. It turned out he was now working as a night watchman for construction sites.
I was horribly embarrassed, being seen by someone who knew and recognized me. I struggled to not cover myself and my voice trembled:
“I… nice… uh… nice… to see you again… I…”
“No need to be the shy one, Missy. We’re all friends here.”
Yvonne interlocked her fingers and shamelessly stretched her arms over her head. The watchman smiled slightly as he studied her thin figure.
“So, Mr. Galloway, what’s the job?”
He pointed to the upper part of a huge construction crane that dominated the building site.
“Light bulbs. Them red ones, at the top, they done burnt out. If you can get up there and swap ’em, I’d be much obliged, Missy.”
“Sure thing, Sir. New light bulbs… going up.”
I looked at the crane. It was one of the biggest ones I had ever seen, and I was standing right next to it.
“Uh… we’re… actually gonna climb that?”
“Sure are. I’ll have you go first so you can set the pace. It’s gonna be a tough climb, so if you need to stop and rest, that’s fine. We got four hours.”
We climbed past the crane’s base and approached the service ladder. It went up, up, and more up, disappearing into the night sky. It reminded me of the kid’s story “Jack and the Beanstalk”. And we were actually going to climb it.
This is totally insane, I thought to myself: why in the fuck am I going along with this? And yet, I knew I had to do it. I’d regret it for the rest of my life if I didn’t. I took a breath, nerved myself, and put my hands on the ladder.
Yvonne carried the light bulbs in a service backpack that old man Galloway had provided her and slung it over her shoulder. Then we started climbing the crane’s ladder. I suppose we could have taken the lift, but Galloway never mentioned it and Yvonne didn’t ask. And I knew why. Her attitude about streaking would mean that she expected to climb the ladder. Taking the lift would be cheating, in her mind.
There were a lot of things I wouldn’t have tried had I not hung out with Yvonne. Climbing a 20-story construction crane in the middle of the night in the nude was definitely something I would have never thought of doing on my own. But here I was, stark naked at 2:00 am, climbing a ladder 20 stories above the city.
The truth was that, as I got closer to the top, I was so exhausted I no longer thought about being naked in full view of the entire downtown area. I went very slowly, struggling to get my arms and legs to grip the next rung of a ladder that seemed like it would never end. Sweat was pouring down my body and dripping onto my companion below.
Yvonne didn’t rush me. I frequently had to stop during the final five stories, but she never objected.
“It’s OK. I’m just enjoying the view, so take your time.”
Enjoying the view… I wondered if that meant her view of the city, or her view of my ass. Or probably both. Anyhow, I noticed that she was looking up at me every time I glanced down.
Finally we made it to the top. Yvonne was in better shape than I was so, as always, she was much less winded. I was jealous that she had so much energy in her. She installed the light bulbs while I caught my breath and recovered from the 20-story climb.
I knew that she’d want pictures of our crane-climbing adventure, and that night she took a lot of them. She came prepared: she had transferred all the old pictures from her phone so she could fill her memory card a bunch of new ones on the crane.
I had recovered enough to feel exposed and vulnerable. I was frightened, but I also was totally turned on. The adrenaline rush was awesome.
I could see why my friend was so into this. A strange thing always happened to me whenever we did a “hardcore” streak like that night we went up the construction crane. The fear, the exhaustion, and the excitement was so intense, that when I finally got my breath back, I was soooo turned on. It was at those moments when we were out in public in some really risky place, that I truly belonged to her. I was no longer in control of myself, or my of sexual desires. And she knew it. She kissed me and we made out on the scaffolding of the construction crane’s arm, 20 stories above the city and with the wind blowing against our sweaty bodies.
When we climbed down, Mr. Galloway was waiting for us. He needed to lock up the crane’s staircase and take the backpack with the burned-out light bulbs. When his supervisor returned the next day, he would take credit for changing them, of course.
Yvonne was still very excited. She was absolutely shameless when she was on a streaking high. She handed me her cell phone and told me to take some pictures of herself with Galloway. Obviously the watchman was more than happy to oblige, as he put his arm around Yvonne’s sweaty shoulder. I ended up taking 20 pictures of those two together.
Later, I asked her if she was going to post the pictures. “The ones we took with the old man, unfortunately no, ’cause they’d probably get him fired. But I’ll send copies to his e-mail, and he can do what he wants with them.”
I didn’t think about it at the time, but my own inhibitions were quickly going away thanks to Yvonne. I didn’t consider trying to cover myself when I was taking the pictures. I knew I would have looked foolish in front of my friend had I shown any modesty after everything we had just done.
To this day I wonder what my parents would have done had they known where I was and what I was doing. How would they have reacted if they knew I was totally naked on top of a construction crane in the middle of the night with a classmate I wasn’t even supposed to get along with? That I had spent the entire night streaking and was five miles away from any clothing that belonged to me? Would they have cut short their vacation to lecture me and ground me? Or maybe they would have said screw it – we paid for this trip and we’ll deal with Christina when we get home. I never found out because, they never found out. I guess ignorance really is bliss.
My only reality at that moment was Yvonne and the adventures she shared with me. My parents were off in another reality, separate from mine. And that was fine with me.