Friday, May 31, 2013
Like being in the middle of the ocean for days, with nothing but dark clouds and stormy weather, while suddenly one morning, the skies open up, releasing the heavenly beauty that is the sun.
I can hear her across the hall, speaking in muffled tones, leaving at all times of day with other disembodied voices acting as alternate personalities of the same body. I have never really seen her with anyone else, but the voices stick to her nonetheless. She lives in a apartment building on the third floor, just across from me. The place looks as if its been taken straight outta the 60's, with green wallpaper with whites lines racing throughout as if on acid, an nowhere to go. The more you look at them the less they seem to make sense, like one of those illusions that has the stairs always going up, even if it is a impossibility. But back to the woman next door. I have always been one of the shy ones, always wanting something to happen but too scared to go out an do anything about it myself. So instead she sits there, behind the proverbial glass walls like some museum piece. She has knocked on my door a few times though, mostly to borrow some random kitchen utensil, or some ingredient she forgot to buy from the grocer down the road. She has a somewhat unconventional beauty to her, not too be rude, I am just saying that she does not look like those factory sealed models that are indistinguishable from each other. The ones that dawn each and every magazine or commercial that even remotely has anything to do with the male side of the genome. I see her on the street sometimes on her way too or from her apartment, with her blond hair a beautiful mess, that partially covers the glasses that she dawns so perfectly. She always has on some flowered dress that would seem more appropriate back in the fifties. An as she walks by, off in her own little world, I wave to her each an every time. But she normally just looks on in confusion, or not at all. I have gotten myself to go across the hall a few times to ask her to lunch or dinner or something, but every time I freeze and end up asking some stupid strange question that makes me look even worse. Its odd though how she doesn't recognize me when our paths happen to somewhat meet on the outside, as if she blanks me out after every encounter we might have.
I can now suddenly hear quite the commotion coming from outside my door, sounding as if its a screaming match between two disgruntled people. I take a quick peak outside acting like a concerned citizen( or a peeking Tom) and find her standing there staring off down the empty hallway." Is everything okay?". I ask somewhat whispering(even though I am not sure why). She looks over, sobbing, and wipes the tears from her eyes the best she can, although it just works to smear her mascara. Is it bad though, that now I find her even more beautiful than i usually do. Maybe its just the close proximity, or her most vulnerable state. Or maybe I just see myself as some Knight in shining armor riding off towards the castle to save the damsel in distress." Yeah, I will be fine". She tells me." Its Beth, by the way".
"Yeah, we have met before". At that we pause, standing in the hallway staring at each other wondering where to go next." Did you want to come in, have some coffee or something?". I can see the gears working as she mulls this over, as she is not yet certain if she wants to go along with this ride( but I don't blame her)." You are allowed to say no, I was just thinking you wanted someone to talk to". I pause, think over what I said, and continue." Or something". She smiles, one of those smiles that can crack mountains, like being in the middle of the ocean for days, with nothing but dark clouds and stormy weather, while suddenly one morning, the skies open up, releasing the heavenly beauty that is the sun. As I ask her to come in I instantly regret it, I have been in love with this woman for so long I don't think I can handle the rejection. Maybe this needs to be taken slow, friends first, showing her how good I can be, no matter what. Be the man that every woman wants( except for all the muscles and Brad Pitt good looks of course)." Yeah, that would be nice". She utters, in a almost shy voice. Inside she sits down on the couch while I make some tea in the kitchen, which I am actually quite surprised that I even have, seeing that I am more of a coffee man myself. Beth sits their on the couch with her nerves all out in the open. She looks as if she is in some foreign hostile country, and just looking for ways of escape." Thanks". She tells me, as I put down the tea on the table in front of her." So". I ask, not quite sure where to go from here." Is everything okay, need anything else?". She looks up, with her eyes still misty from before." No, I'm good, I'm good". She replies ending in a whisper." You know". She continues, after a few moments of silence." It wasn't always like this, me and him. When we first met it was like nothing before, he was sweet, funny and caring. But now". She stops, to try to catch her tears before they fall." But now, I don't know, he is like a totally different person. He argues constantly, always wants to know where I am. That is how this all started you know". She says looking up at me for the first time in a bit. As I finally just now sit down beside her, trying as I might to console." I hope I am not out of line saying this, an I know its easier said than done. But it sounds like your better off without him. Your a beautiful, smart, amazing woman". I stop, as if to catch my breath." I'm sorry, I am not very good at this kind of thing".
"No! its fine, thanks. I appreciate it". Silence, now surrounds us, until about a minute later I call out as if it exploded out of me. "How about we get out of here, take a break. There is this little place just around the corner that makes amazing pastries, cakes, you name it. How about it, I'll treat". You can tell she was taken aback by this, an with the sudden look on her face I at once regret what I just said." Yeah". She says back." That would be nice. Just let me get a little cleaned up first". Wiping the already dried tears from her eyes, she walks towards the door, as I am left on the couch not sure if I should follow." Come on". She calls, with what appears to be the first smile I seen since seeing her outside in the hall." There is no reason to be shy".
Her apartment is amazingly neat, as if everything she owns was built specifically for the spot it's in." I will be right back". She tells me." Make yourself at home". Disappearing in the back hallways I sit on the couch watching the city outside the window. Birds every now and than fly by with people in other buildings going about their daily life. It's weird seeing the world from this viewpoint, seeming as if we could be in some city in the sky. It appears almost empty, with only a few buildings jutting up from the ground. I can hear her in the back getting ready, as i have never been in her place before, just at the door looking in. I can start to see kind of why her relationship went sour, she seems to be very trusting, we( according to her anyway) just met and already she invites me in to her apartment so readily, or maybe I am just reading to much into it( which I do happen to do quite easily). Not too long later out she walks, with these short Jean shorts and a white blouse type thing with what appears to be small purple flowers of some kind." What do you think?". Se calls out." Its not too". She pauses for half a second somewhat turning as if to pose like some kind of model." Inappropriate?".
"No, no. Of course not. Whatever makes you happy right".
"Well". She begins." I figured if we are going to go out, I might as well try to enjoy myself, for once anyway".
Outside the sun is out, and the mirages of ones imagination run amok throughout the pavement. The place is not too far, and the people are out in droves, sweating profusely while complaining about it simultaneously. When we get there the place is fairly empty, with seats to the left and right of us and a makeshift path straight through, like Moses parting the red sea. We take a seat in the front by the window after ordering our desired desserts, me a chocolate truffle cake her a half dozen cupcakes with pink frosting." Have you always lived next to me?" She asks, keeping her voice down, as if people are listening in from other tables." Not always". I reply." But I did move in a few years ago". Putting her cupcake down, staring at me looking like she is in quite the mode of concentration." I find it hard to believe that I went all this time without noticing you".
"Well". I say." I do have a tendency to do that".
"To do what?". She asks." You know? Blend in, into the background. I guess I just have a forgetful face". She smiles at this, and takes another bite from her cupcakes. I catch myself staring at her, every now and again. The weird thing is though is that she doesn't seem to mind, just looking up every once and a while with that partially goofy grin she tends to get when in a apparently good mood. After we're done eating we find ourselves back outside, with me taking the lead thinking that we are heading back home, but just before she stops me." Lets not go home". She says." At least not yet".
"Oh". I spit out, as if in second nature." Do you have anything in mind".
"Well I know this is a Tad odd". She begins." Since we just technically met, but I thought maybe a walk in the park would be a nice way to end the day".
"Yeah, that sounds wonderful". I tell her. The park is not too far from here, as downtown has Parks a plenty. The one we end up going to is basically a makeshift forest with pathways throughout like the veins of a over muscular body builder. Every so often as if from nowhere an open field will show up. Every time I go it seems as if those fields in question move around like some kind of freakish haunted forest. Though the place is beautiful this time of day, with the trails covered over in shade with only barely a peak of sunshine coming through the canopy. Most of the time we spend is in silence, just enjoying the scenes of nature. We spend so much time in the hustle an bustle of the downtown core that it is nice to get out to the sounds of mother nature. I always feel As if I am getting some system reboot, a chance to clean out all the junk you pick up in the midst of a overrun and polluted city. At the end of it all, and still not saying a word, we find ourselves back once more at our apartments." Thanks!". She says." That was exactly what I needed. Sorry I didn't talk all that much, but I have so much on my mind you know".
"Yeah, no problem". I tell her." Anytime you need anything, I am right across the hall". She stays silent at this, instead communicating through a quite unexpected hug. I can feel the warmth of her body against mine, and I can't help think how right this feels. As if getting us together is filling some kind of prophesy, or destiny, like we were meant to be together, two lost puzzle pieces that just so happen to fit side by side.
The rest of the day is spent holed up in my apartment, somewhat watching for the door as if for some reason she will run in wanting to see me. I try to get my mind onto some other task to forget about this, but to no avail, as one eye is always on the look out. It's hard to pay attention to anything you might be doing when one ear is attempting to do its own thing. Especially when your eyes are following right behind. Have you ever had that feeling that you might be losing control of your own body, that you end up doing things that you end up questioning afterwards, wondering why you did them in the first place. Its a strange feeling, almost as you are floating on a thin blanket of fog, an no matter how much you may fight, you cannot stop yourself( an sometimes, you don't want to).Throughout the rest of the day all is quiet, which actually is a bit odd, figuring I do live in a apartment. Buts its not just that, usually I can hear some type of sound coming from her place, be it music, TV, or just her uncanny ability to for some reason slam the door without even trying. I wanna go over and knock, see if all is alright, but one day ( about a hour or two really) of hanging out when she was at one of her(apparently) low points, doesn't really signify that I am a big enough presence in her life to do so( but again, I am probably just over thinking it). Don't get me wrong, its not like I have a glass to her walls or anything, but my ears do tune into her station more than my own. The whole week goes much the same way, an by the middle I stop trying. Going back to my normal routine finds to be a little bit of a challenge, after being with her that one day it has given me the first real breath of what a relationship may somewhat be like, as I have never had one myself. At least not a real one anyways. I have had a few one nighters, but for one reason or another could never get to the long term. I haven't even been on a date in quite some time, not that I have really tried all that much as of late.
About a week later though I hear the distinctive hum of her ever creaking door, like a song you hear on the radio you know all too well. I wanna run out, give her a hug, and maybe console her, but that would more than likely just scare her off. Which is the opposite of what I am trying to do. I have thought of why I feel so attached to her though( in which I do feel) and other than the usual stuff i am at odds to figure out why. Maybe in some part of my mind I believe its the easiest route to take. I mean, why not try to court someone I already met, would be easier than going out and meeting some stranger. But there is just something about her, that I can't readily seem to be able to put my finger on, she just has that ability to drive men ( at least me anyhow) crazy. Like some tractor beam I can't seem to try to struggle my way out of. I do know one thing though, she is beautiful, like a gem, that just needs a little dusting off to see the real beauty below, its just a shame that people can't see it below the layer of proverbial dirt.
The next day from when she arrived, I hear a knock upon my door. I immediately twitch in excitement, as a few hours before I heard a few whispers of two people talking, only to be followed by the slamming of some door. On the other side of it I find her, once more, with newly acquired tears that unfortunately seem to frolic down her face. Its strange, she seems to be in distress, but looks to be somewhat partially happy." Come in, please, come in?". I repeat in a nervous tone. She takes a seat on the couch in silence, wiping the tears from her eyes as if to get herself to a presentable manner." I'm sorry to always come over like this, but you were just so helpful the other day".
"Its fine". I tell her." I am always here with whatever you need, no matter". The rain outside is fallen, like the proverbial heroes of old, and its doing so so heavily it seems as if it might flood the city. I bring her a cup of tea, just the way she likes it, she stirs the cup around a bit making the liquid end up in a vortex of sorts, as she stares at it watching what it might do." You remembered". She suddenly calls out, as if finally gasping for air." Well, how could I forget". I pause." You're the only one who drinks tea around here".
"Not to mention the only person that comes over?".
"Is that I joke". I say." Coming from you, well that's hard to imagine". She laughs, a very infectious laugh at that. Maybe the first one I have really heard coming from her. As we sit on the couch, side by side, with our legs dangerously close to touching, I feel as if I should ask her about what happened, if anything happened at all. Seeing that I didn't actually see anything, I full on realize that I might be wrong. But I hold back, as I do not want to seem as I am forcing myself upon her, it would possibly just scare her off. When she is ready to talk, she will." Do you mind if we watch some t.v". She suddenly blurts out in a strangely calm voice, as if she is at once okay where her path now leads." Yeah".I say." Be my guest".