And then you look up and look around, and make a conscious shift in your attitude…
and suddenly the world seems a little less… dark.
So, I struggled with myself on the way home after work.
I knew I had to eat, but I also knew I had no food in my house.
I knew I wasn’t overly hungry, so my annual Keg dinner was out.
I knew I wanted company, but wanted ultimately to be alone.
I wanted the the comfort of a familiar place, familiar food and the company of strangers.
So I decided somewhere along the commute that I was taking myself for tapas and tequila. I hoped it would be quiet in there as it was early, and it was. I got myself a table by an electrical outlet, plugged in my computer, and started to write what was swirling around in my head (see note)
I announced to the waitress that it was my birthday (the first official out loud proclamation of said occasion on this day) and that I was treating myself to dinner out. She thought that was a fine plan. I set about to order my favourite dishes, which I enjoyed while reading the greetings on my Facebook wall, many of which brought tears to my eyes. Funny how a few simple words on a virtual page can mean so much.
I ordered dessert and alcohol laced coffee, which was delivered by my lovely waitress with a lit candle and a shot of dark Puerto Rican rum on the house.
I teared up when I blew out the candle. I don’t even remember the actual wish.
all I can remember is the word ‘better’ I wished for ‘better’
I don’t even know what that means.
Anyway, it was still early and for some reason I walked in the opposite direction to home. The little fruit stand along the way had buckets of flowers, and in one of them gorgeous bundles of Sunflowers. My favourite. So I bought myself a bouquet and kept walking.
I wasn’t quite ready to go home yet, and thought a night cap was in order. Before I knew it I was standing in front of the Combine Eatery. It was bustling with people, but there were a few empty seats at the end of the bar, so I saddled up. Two great things happened. Stefano (cutey bartender) was working, and Albert (one of the owners) yelled out “Meesh!” from across the room. I love that! Particularly as I have only been in there once before.
Again I proclaimed it to be “my birthday” out loud, and ordered a shot of coffee patron (oy.. that stuff is wicked awesome) to sip on before heading home.
Albert (fellow Virgo I would soon find out) poured 3 shots of a stellar bourbon, and the boys joined me in a birthday toast!
Stefano was thankfully unbusy, and we chit chatted relentlessly at the end of the bar about music and food and tv shows. He was quick to throw in a few “my girlfriend” ‘s <insert sad trombone here> but if anything that took the pressure off of me to “be” anything other than myself and in the moment, and I just relaxed into a really lovely, chatty, flirty, laughy conversation with an interesting man. He is lovely (3/4 Italian, 1/4 Argentinian) (yum) and I secretly hoped the “girlfriend” line was just something he throws out there protectively to preemptively fend off unwanted advances. (I’ve thrown a few misleading “my boyfriend”‘s out myself). He signed out early, poured himself a beer and joined me on the other side of the bar to continue talking. All totaled, we talked pretty much non-stop for 2 hrs. What a sweet turn around for a day that started off so bleak.
It wasn’t until I was walking home that I realized it was a week ago today that I sat in that restaurant in the late afternoon, puffy faced and teary eyed with these two lovely strangers, who fed me and listened to my tale of kitty heartbreak, and then made me laugh and smile and feel better about the world.
anyway… it is after midnight, so I have successfully made it through my birthday. A brand new year is upon me. Let’s see what it holds shall we?