It was a cloudy day, but the sun was still visible, trying it's best to warm the channel between Santa Barbara and the islands. Boats sailed by. People passed walking their dogs. And we talked... and talked... and talked. About the recent election. About traveling. About music. About families. About where we've been, where we want to be... and then,
"I never do this, you know, meet someone out somewhere, get their number, go on a date."
"Really? Are you kidding? I never do this. I never have, actually."
"So then..." he said with an amused and pleased smile, "I find it quite interesting that here we are, on this bench, two people who never do this, but are now, with each other. Very interesting."
And I knew it was the beginning of something, what, I couldn't anticipate, but that something was going to happen. Somehow, even though I couldn't guess how things would turn out, I knew that I would, should move forward with no regrets. I told myself, you can handle whatever may come of this... this instant chemistry with a handsome, driven and thoughtful man who grew up on the other side of the world... who would be moving back home in seven months.
And it was so very very fun... because of this I was challenged, I laughed, made other new friends, and felt my thirst for experience and knowledge about the world expand. How glad I am that it happened, and even gladder that I experienced caring about someone and being cared about in a way that left absolutely no regrets but gratefulness on both sides. And though the romance ended, the friendship has not.
So a few days ago, we ended up, unplanned, in that same spot from months before, overlooking the ocean, and talked as friends the night before he flew away, with a June moon shining down instead of a November sun.
Know yourself and proceed accordingly, but seize the day with a grip so fierce you'll remember how it felt in years to come.