Paris Wasn’t Yesterday?

May 16, 2015 by

          On the first day of May, I was walking west on College toward the theatre, weaving my head between people in attempt to spot my friend. I waved excitedly in his direction when I caught his eye. I could see him laughing in response as he got up from the bench he was sitting on.

          “Hey friend!” I squealed as I threw my arms around him.

          “Hey,” he laughed, mid-hug.

          “Can I just say – you smell really good, by the way,” I interrupted myself. (The very thing that had prompted us to chill that night was his smell/this text I sent him the week before: “I smell Swiss Army in my office and thought of you lol. Let’s hang out soon! Are you free next Friday?”)

          “Really? I feel like I smell like shit,” he said.

          “No, no, you’re good,” I assured. “Anyway, can I just say, I swear we’re either in Italy together or in Little Italy together.”

          He laughed. Aside from last summer’s trip to Italy marking the second time we’ve met up in Rome, he almost always wants to go to College when we hang out downtown.

          “How are you?!” I shrieked, in need of serious life updates, given that it had somehow been since Italy.

 

***

 

          Tired last night after aerial, I didn’t feel like going out out, but I also didn’t feel like staying home.

          “Yo, any plans tonight?” my Italy buddy texted me.

          Perfect, I thought. When he texts me last-minute on a Friday, he’s usually in the same doesn’t-feel-like-going-out-out-but-doesn’t-feel-like-being-home mood that I was in.

          “Free now,” I replied as I walked out of my studio.

          “Are you doing anything tonight?” he asked.

          “I just finished aerial. Nothing planned for the rest of the night. Want to chill?”

          “Yes! Can we do something chill though?” he asked. “I just really want to get out for a bit, like coffee or walk or park or shisha or something.”

          “Yes, park!” I replied. (Shisha isn’t my thing. I don’t like the taste.)

          “Okay, I’m just going to finish my paper, so like 9:30? Is that too late? Maybe 9 if I finish earlier.”

          “Sure,” I said. “Don’t rush. I’m good with 9:30.”

          “Magnifico,” he responded, making me (and I’m sure himself) laugh.

          He came to get me at 10, and we swapped the park idea for coffee at the recollection of ourselves on the verge of chills two weeks prior as we stubbornly stuck out cool weather for a patio. When we got to Williams, we got on the topic of Europe and how neither of us is likely to be going this year. Me because I’m happy right here at home and him because he’s got other travel plans this summer.

          “It was on this weekend last year that you started trying to convince me to go to Rome,” I recalled. “How is it already May 2–4 again?”

          “I feel like I’m going to end up doing what you did,” he joked, referring to my last-minute decision to meet him in Rome last summer after repeatedly declining his invitation. He knows a couple friends going this year that keep asking him to join them. He can’t afford it, especially considering the first of his summer trips is next weekend.

          “Chicago is next weekend?” I asked excitedly, not realizing he was going so soon.

          “Yeah, I feel like I’m doing your kind of travelling,” he said. “We’re leaving at 10 at night on Friday, driving 8 hours to get there for Saturday morning, and leaving late Sunday, around midnight, to be back by Monday.”

          I laughed. That is certainly very me and NYC. “I don’t know if I’ll go anywhere this year,” I told him. “Everyone’s booking their summer trips and I still feel like I just got back from Paris.”

          “I don’t feel like you need a vacation,” he said.

          It was precisely the point I was trying to make to myself the other day, except that hearing him casually say it made me okay with it.

Happiness Tip: Accept that your definition of happiness changes.

 
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