It’s been a week now since our ‘rendezvous’.
Sneaking around requires some discretion, plus a trick or two—a ploy, a ruse. So, yes, we met, but not being one to kiss and tell…
I hadn’t seen O in over twelve years. So, we’re like, what, over twelve years older than we were? This was a huge concern for O, who was so certain I’d take one look at her, see she was now a decrepit old hag, or whatever, and tear out of the Motel 66 parking lot never to be heard from again. Was I harboring reservations about her advanced age? I wasn’t … not at all. I did admittedly add twelve years to my mental image of how I remembered her, and, even so, the picture I painted was still looking pretty good to me.
Another concern of O’s was that she’d be disfunctionally nervous at first. “We need to have a clear itinerary from the get go,” she said. “We need structure.”
So we came up with a step by step, detailed plan. We would first take our luggage and groceries up to the room, step in, then quickly out—for lunch and a drink, then a long walk in the park. And if that wasn’t enough to calm her, then, well, we’d go see a movie, and then another.
I left my house at 7:30, headed east on I-70, feeling good, cheerful, a bit excited—a four hour drive to the motel. As I got to within a half-hour of the place, it suddenly dawned on me that I’ve committed myself to a blind date—for three days and nights. What the fuck was I thinking?
I couldn’t find an answer to the question, so I drove on. I would have anyway … no matter what. We’d agreed to arrive at the same time, to avoid the torture of waiting for the world to end in a motel parking lot. Actually, I agreed to arrive first.
“If you’re not there when I get there,” she said, “I’ll turn around and head home… no ifs, ands, or buts.”
So I got there ten minutes early, checked in, took my stuff up to the room, then, with one minute left before her expected arrival, I went back out to my car to watch for her. Twenty-nine minutes later, I spotted a vehicle with West Virginia plates pulling in. I was warned beforehand not to approach her too enthusiastically, so I gave her a call to see if she might want to chat over the phone for a while before leaving her car—talk away some of the nervousness—ease into our meeting.
“Hi,” I said as gently and sweetly as I could manage.
“Are you going to help me get all this shit up to the room or just sit there and watch?” she said.
I clapped my phone shut, hopped from my car and stepped over to hers. She was bent over her back seat dragging her luggage toward the car door. She turned, gave me a brief, nervous glance, and then turned back to what she was doing.
OMG! Wow! Just like that! I remembered what it was that I had, all those years before, been drawn to, fascinated by, and frightened of. It was her, just as beautiful as I remembered. This woman really rocked my world—rattled my foundation.
I tingled with excitement as the elevator door closed before us—just O and I in a tiny six by six-foot box… alone… breathing, deep nervous breaths. (Elevator? OK, so maybe it wasn’t Motel 66.)
We put our stuff away, then threw each other quick glances.
“Do you want to go to lunch now?” I said.
“I’m not hungry,” she replied.
“I’m not either.” I looked down at the king-sized bed. Our bed. “Do you just want to sit and talk for a while?”
She glanced from me to the bed and back to me. “No.”
“Yes.” She lowered her butt to the bed, so close to the edge, it’s debatable whether she was really on it or not.
I scooted up to the middle of the backboard, piled a couple of pillows against it, and leaned back.
She took a deep breath, fidgeted, then suddenly got back to her feet. “Let’s go do something.”
“Do you want to go for a walk?” I offered.
“What do you want to do?” she asked.
“Hold you,” I said.
She took a deep breath, then, a long moment later, let it go. “OK.”