We met at the airport. I had to go around twice because he accidentally waited at the Departures curb. He had just arrived. I took the keys out of the ignition. I was wearing a short striped flowy dress, a turquoise scarf hugging my neck tightly, a jacket with black leather sleeves, and leather knee high boots. He told me later that it was a very “Taylor outfit.” He wore aviator sunglasses, plaid shorts, and a tee shirt that hugged his round shape. The first kiss was awkward. He missed my lips and kissed the valley that leads from the bottom of my nose to the top of my lip.
The second kiss was also awkward. It was after lunch and a beer. We walked with our fingers interlaced, which was not natural for us. But we had forgotten what was natural for us. It had been 2 months. He tried to kiss me as we walked. This time we laughed about it. The first time we ignored it.
We drove home using the GPS. I still have not figured out the streets in Portland. I parked in the driveway because neither housemate was home. We walked up the raw wood stairs. We laid next to one another on my bed for a few moments. Our feet dangled off the edge. We kissed a third time. It was not awkward. We continued to kiss and our limbs ended up tangled. Our bodies remembered one another.
We got dressed. He wore pants now because the sun had set and the Portland air nipped at his Southern California burnt skin. We went to Imperial on SE Division. It’s a taproom. We drank beer. We then both ate grilled cheese and tomato soup at Dots. It was happy hour. This was our routine. The next four days was filled with silence then talking then kissing then drinking then laughing then sex then loving. However, distance has kept either of us from admitting the latter. After four days of this I brought him back to the Departures curb.
That was 5 days ago. But this is not a story of love and loss. I will see him again in July. I woke up 2 days ago to warm air and kitties kissing my face. The house was mine. I put on my denim cutoffs so that I wore a turquoise tank top with no bra and those shorts. I made myself coffee. I washed dishes as the hot water took on the flavor of the espresso roast I like. And then I sat outside in the shade alone. My solitude exaggerated the greatness of this morning. I welcomed the exaggeration. My coffee sat on the arm of the metal chair. I watched the tricolored cat with green eyes hop around in the tall grass. You could tell where she had been. The grass folded under the weight of her body. It stayed folded as she followed scents and bugs to different spots of standing grass. The sun made all the colors exaggerated. I read a short story by Zadie Smith. It was about a young woman working in a house in London across the street from the Embassy of Cambodia. There was a subtlety in her writing I strove for. It made me excited to know more, so that I can write about more. This day lacked urgency. I allowed myself to feel content and proud and inspired within the same breath. I memorized the feeling. I understood what I wanted from life