Second dates are a huge tossup. They are the swing states. Remember when my most recent second date was a big No from the moment I saw him? Last night, I was texting the Moroccan from outside Jupiter to say I had arrived and asking where he was (it’s a big place) and I got his response “sur la terrasse” and was finishing an email to KC about hiking the Lost Coast when he walked up. And he was a big Yes.
I noticed after my last post that I described him as a “mysterious man of mystery,” so something in my unconscious and sleepy mind’s description of him revealed a perceived double mystery and wanted to know more. I said that I was feeling “go with the flow” on this one, not wildly excited but with a pleasant feeling. Last night, my heart skipped when I saw him. He gave me a big smile and a hug and walked me back to the table where he’d been waiting.
On the whole BART ride over, and really the whole previous two days, I was feeling AF was imminent, and I was starting to wish she’d just show up already so I could at least have a beer with my pizza. But she was still MIA, so I settled on hot tea given that we were technically outside and under a not very hot heat lamp.
To describe him: he’s tall, maybe 6’2″, dark, and…handsome. He has a gentle voice and a big smile. Speaks English flawlessly with only the tiniest errors in pronunciation and many Americanisms like “taking one for the team” (to explain his drinking beer when I wasn’t–I told him I was detoxing), and telling me about a friend from Idaho who was always teased with, “Who da ho?” and she’d have to answer, “I da ho.” He came to the US on an internship for Hilton and has worked seasonal jobs all over the country (including Mackinac Island, twice), was married to an American for a while in Salt Lake City (thus the green card), and when they split he was ready to move to SF, which he has always bookmarked as where he wanted to end up. He got here eight months ago, waits tables and works on his computer science degree, saying that all his previous jobs/cities were fun in the moment, and now he’s ready to stop being seasonal and build a future.
He’s solicitous, kind of mini-waiting on me as he confirms I’m happy with the table choice, the menu, the heat lamp, serving me my salad. He congratulated me on Obama (I congratulated him back even though he couldn’t vote). He wants to go running but doesn’t know where to go. He’s been researching meditation groups and exploring places around the Bay Area. He drives a ’97 Honda Civic. He plays guitar and jams with friends at his favorite bar in North Beach.
I felt myself leaning further and further forward in my chair as if I were eventually going to pounce on him. He paid the bill while I was in the ladies room (no AF still). We stepped outside and I assumed I would take BART home but he offered to drive me, claiming to be meeting up with friends later in the city. Whether or not this was true, I accepted. On the way to his car it was really freezing and he put his arm around me. In the car, he put on nice acoustic guitar music, blasted the heat, and then kissed me. It was the kiss I have dreamed of. We made out for a while, parked under a streetlamp on the Berkeley campus. He said he enjoys every minute with me.
I did not expect my going with the flow to take me to such a sweet and unexpected place! He drove me home. He tried, gently, jokingly, all possible angles, as guys will, to get me to invite him in, knowing that I wouldn’t but that I wanted to. I left him there and walked in to my building, feeling powerful, and where anxiety might rush in (what happens next? what if…? etc.), I instead remembered that, for now, I’m just looking for a guy to hang out with, and found one, and felt glad and grateful. I’ll see him again over the weekend.
Went to bed and woke up at 7 to use the bathroom, feeling AF had landed. And there she was. Going with the flow ends in flow.
Quoting from a poster photographed next to Obama at the Chicago campaign office, “The definition of hope is you still believe even when it’s hard.”
And it IS hard, made harder by the fact that I now have to skip a month while I’m out of town. Yes, I can make a case for it being a good idea–I haven’t taken a month off yet in 6 tries including 1 chemical pregnancy and 1 miscarriage. Yes, I’m about to start a medicated cycle and need to take a class first on how to give myself a shot (a class that isn’t offered in time for this cycle anyway). Yes, the next 6 weeks are stressful with work deadlines and holiday travel. I just can’t believe it will be Christmas before I can try again. It’s getting old. I’m coming up on the anniversary of my trip to the Grand Canyon where I shook hands with the universe. Even my dear readers seem tired. This isn’t how any of it was supposed to turn out.
But this is my story, this is my flow, this is my lazy river. This is it, this is where I am today. What can I do but keep floating along and trying and hoping and believing and enjoying my precious time on this earth, greeting all of its surprises with equanimity, all the disappointments and all the loveliness…
I will be Buddha in a kayak, breathing it all in.