0

Goodbye

I rolled over and slowly opened my eyes, the space next to me was empty.  I supposed it was him getting up to use the bathroom that woke me up in the first place.  It felt late in the day; the sky was bright and it was quiet, too quiet, missing was the sounds of the family going about their day.  I groped for my phone, the digital clock claimed it was only 8:00 am, we had slept for 10 straight hours, yet still I felt drained.

I groggily recalled returning home, although I guess it wasn’t really my home anymore, I felt like an intruder when I walked in the door last night.  I went into the house in search of my landlords so I could tell them I’d changed my plans, but the entire family was out, probably at their daughter’s Christmas concert.
We’d stripped down naked and collapsed on my unmade bed, even though we’d both been exhausted we still made love, his strong warm body on top of mine, his perfect member thrusting deep inside of me, it was all I could do not to look into those blue eyes and whisper, “I love you.”  Then I was on my stomach and he was behind and soon I was coming, my orgasm so profound that for a moment, I left my body.  I suppose sleep came soon after because I didn’t remember much else.

He returned to the room.
“Good morning beautiful,” he cooed softly in my ear.  “I’m going to the bakery for a pie run, do you want anything?”
“Mmmm… coffee please,” I mumbled.
“Coffee,” he repeated with a smile, “Go back to sleep, I’ll be back soon.”
I curled up on my side as my mind attempted to recall the hazy details of the past 24 hours.


It was Friday afternoon, the day before I was meant to leave and Nick had insisted on having a barbecue for me, unaware that I had booked a bus ticket for the next morning.  Driving to his house I felt anxious: I hadn’t finished packing, I had no reliable transportation back into town and the way he and Jill had been talking, I knew they were planning on a wild night.

When we arrived at his house, no one was home so we all broke into his yard and started sipping beers and listening to tunes.  Nick finally showed up with his puppy Otis in tow, others began to arrive and soon the party was in full swing.  We drank, we ate, we drank, we smoked.  At one point, all of us girls went swimming in the pool.  Everyone was fairly intoxicated and adamant on doing cocaine.  Nick went down the street with money and returned with MDMA.  Everyone loudly vocalised their distaste, but we all ended up doing it anyway.  My anxiety soared as I began to peak, I couldn’t sit still, I couldn’t relax.  I kept moving seats and getting up to do things and starting new conversations.  Jill was all over the map, Nick kept wanting to cuddle and tell me how special I was, Don could barely speak, Shawn was too intense, Kennedy had not done M but was stoned as shit, Mel was too high to function and her cousin Sally looked sober, bored and judgemental.
Max showed up with a couple friends and I insisted they drop with us, they even chipped in for another baggie.  I started to feel a little more relaxed.

It was certainly an entertaining night, Jill got into the clothing I intended to donate and we had a fashion show.  We played truth or dare and everyone got naked or made out.  We took turns confessing deep secrets and fantasies.
Everyone was starting to do more, but I was done and falling asleep on Nick’s shoulder, I knew I should just go to bed and get some sleep, but I just wanted to stay in the company of my beautiful friends and listen to the sounds of Shakey Graves picking away at his guitar and crooning, “Some of us were built to roam…”

I persuaded Nick to join me and he laughed when I begun my game of seduction, “Why didn’t you just tell me you wanted to fuck?  We could have snuck off for a quicky…”
“Nothing about this is going to be quick,” I assured him.
We explored each other’s bodies touching and kissing every inch of skin.  I felt dazed as if I was entering and exiting a dream.  After half an hour I dried up and we both just fell asleep.

A few hours later my alarm went off.  The first thing I heard was the sound of heavy rain on the rooftop.  I thought about all my friends passed out around the house, I looked over at Nick, naked and beautiful, peaceful.  I thought about leaving them all to trudge down the street alone to the bus stop, to wait in the rain, to rush into town.  The idea alone nearly brought me to tears, so I did what I should have done in the first place: I called Greyhound and for a mere $6 fee, changed my reservation to the following day.  I cuddled up next to Nick and fell back asleep.

The next time I woke it was to my phone ringing.  Kyle was on the other line, he was on his break at work and wondering if we’d all survived the night.  He was especially concerned about Max who was apparently still up cleaning when Kyle had left for work.  I wandered out to the patio and found him staring off into space, poor guy.  I made him tea and as the others began to stir I made them all teas and coffees as well.  All the anxiousness was gone, even though I’d changed my plans last minute and messed up the schedule of my cousin, who was picking me up from the bus stop and my landlords, who were expecting my suite to be entirely empty.  I knew I should feel bad, but truly, I did not care.
I rolled a joint and we all got good and stoned before Max made us bacon and eggs.  Jill had to rush back to town for work so I offered Max my seat in the car, insisting I could get a ride with Nick.  On their way out the door, we grabbed Kennedy and convinced her to stay and spend the day smoking weed and watching Futurama.

Eventually the sky darkened and we dropped Kennedy at home before returning to my now empty abode.  And now we were here…


I sipped my long black and tried to gather my bearings.  I took a much needed shower and said my goodbyes to the family who I had been sharing a home with over the past 3 months.  I made the bed up nicely for the new tenant and Nick and I loaded up his ute.  In town we walked on the beach for a while and ran into some friends who I bid adieu to.
This was the final day I was meant to have; not strung out on M; not tired from being overworked; not rushed and stressed.  This was the farewell I needed: chilled out and with him… the man I had loved and lost, cried for and laughed with.  This man who’d been such a massive force in my life, who I had forged this intense relationship with.

At the bus stop, he gathered me in his arms.  “I miss you already,” he promised and I fought back tears, because the truth was I never intended to move back and he was one of the main reasons why.  The last couple weeks I’d been with him, yet had managed to keep my distance, but I knew eventually I’d get sucked back in.  I couldn’t stand the thought of feeling such deep pain again; the heartbreak was inevitable.
Despite my best wishes, there was no future for me and Nick and there was no life for me in this place.

Onto the big coach I climbed, while he watched me go.  I tried to be strong and look only forward though my body trembled with sadness.

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0

The Return of LipRing

3 more weeks passed by and I had given up hope of seeing LipRing again.
He hadn’t been at the last few Summer Jams, I hadn’t run into him on the street, I couldn’t even find him on Facebook (the fact I was unsure about his name probably didn’t help me in that regard.)  I wondered if perhaps he had been a sexy spirit who returned to roam the Earth one final night before disappearing forever into limbo.  Or maybe he had just left town.  Whatever the reason, I decided it was time to forget about him and move on.

Sunday had rolled around and I was debating going to the weekly instalment of Summer Jams.  Kennedy was working late and my roommate Terry and I were sitting on the couch, watching Chappelle Show and sipping beers.  I was more or less put together as Terry had initially indicated interest in attending the Sunday festivities, but was rapidly back peddling.  Anyway, the two of us decided to drive into town for more beer.  While in town, I suggested we go into the bar, just to check it out.  They weren’t charging cover yet, it might be fun to have a beer and see what’s happening.  We walked across the street to the bar, but did not make it in.  The bouncer banished me for not wearing shoes.  Also, they had already started charging cover.  Fuck that noise.

The two of us retreated home and continued to sip beer and shoot the shit.  Kennedy texted me to announce that she was almost done work and to invite me in joining her at the bar for a quick beer.  I was reluctant, but didn’t want to waste my cute ensemble so I drove back into town.  We entered the courtyard of the bar and were met with the last dying notes of the performing DJ.  We ordered beers and looked around, quickly seeing Argentina, who had become a regular sight at these Summer Jam sessions.  He came running over and gave us each a huge hug, before turning slightly to the guy trailing behind him and asking, “Have you met my friend?”
I looked into the face of his friend and immediately saw the glow of the silver lip ring.
“You!” I exclaimed.
“Right, I forgot that you two have met before…” Argentina trailed off with a smirk.  He and Kennedy began chatting.
I turned to LipRing, “I’m glad I finally ran into you, I wanted to explain why I ran off so awkwardly.”
“Yeah, what was that all about?  Such a huge disappointment for me.”
We started chatting and flirting.  He told  me how he had moved into a house no less than 5 minutes from my own.
When Kennedy reappeared she announced that she wanted to go home and offered LipRing a ride.
“Yeah, that would be great, maybe we could have a couple beers on my deck?” he asked me.
“I’m keen.”
There was no need to discuss it, we both knew exactly what would be going down.

Back at his house, the two of us were struggling to juggle a blanket, a bag of popcorn, beers, smokes and a speaker in order to continue our party out on the deck.  Just as soon as I had everything balanced precariously in my arms, he leaned over and kissed me, then kissed me again.  My arms relaxed and I dropped everything onto the floor.  He pushed me up against the wall as we continued to passionately make out.  Needless to say, we never did make it outside…
After the third time and as the sun began coming up the two of us finally fell asleep, cuddling in his single bed.
In the morning, we went at it two more times before retreating to the shower and throwing together a hasty breakfast of bread, cream cheese and ham.  I literally felt week at the knees as I walked home in the afternoon heat.

We had exchanged numbers, but I didn’t really expect to hear much from him.  A couple days later he added me on Facebook and sent me a message saying that he had written my number down wrong and couldn’t text me, but wanted to invite me to a barbecue at his house.  I begged Kennedy to accompany me for at least an hour and she begrudgingly agreed.  When we arrived, LipRing offered me a beer and wasted no time in inviting me to stay the night.  Once again, we had fun, but that night I could hardly sleep.  His bed was too cramped and his room too hot.  He was pressed right against me, big spoon style, and I was pinned against the wall.  There was no where to move and every time I tried to readjust, his arm would still end up underneath my neck.  I considered getting up and walking home to the comfort of my own bed, but knew I would inadvertently wake up his entire household in the process.
I tossed and turned and had repeated nightmares about LipRing doing terrible, douchey things towards me.  I was actually relieved when I woke to the sound of my alarm, Kennedy and I had planned to drive to a neighbouring town for the day.  He tried to convince me to stay, but I could not be swayed.

The following Sunday I was at Summer Jams, dancing up a storm with my Canadian friends.  Of course, I bumped into LipRing almost immediately.  I tried to play it cool and do my own thing, but by the end of the night we were all over each other and together we began making the long walk home.  As we walked, we talked and as we talked, I began to get a little peeved with his personality.  I hate when people try to present their opinions as facts.  Like when they tell you a song or artist you like is rubbish and then act as if their word is the final say.  I also really dislike when a man rambles on and on about himself and fails to ask even a simple question about yourself.
Regardless of these annoyances, I was on a mission to have sex, not a conversation, so we carried on back to his house.

I awoke to the sound of my phone ringing.  I was naked and sprawled across a mattress strewn on the floor.  LipRing lay beside me groaning, “Make the noise stop!  Please make it stop!”
I began rustling through scattered belongings and finally found my phone, groggily I answered.
It was my work, asking me if I could come in because it had been a really busy morning.  I knew the rational thing to do was get my ass out of bed, go into work and make an extra hundred bucks to keep me going.  But when I rolled over and looked at LipRing – his bronzed, naked body, his mess of blonde hair, the stubble that ran across his strong jaw line – I just couldn’t bring myself to leave his bed.  I made up some excuse about going somewhere for the day and then pretended to lose reception and hung up, quickly nestling back into his awaiting arms.  I had every intention of getting up and doing something with my life, but the day slipped away from me.  It was a blur of sex and breakfast and cuddles and long conversations and surf movies along with the occasional nap.  Before I knew it, it was 9:00 pm and we had barely left his bed, much less his house.  I insisted that I finally retreat home.  We said our goodbyes and once in the safety of my house, I flew into a panic:
Why did I spend the entire day with this guy?  I didn’t really even like him.  I SHOULD have gone into work and made some extra cash.
Things were feeling way too familiar, questions had been broached regarding past relationships, I did not like the direction we were headed.  I didn’t want a boyfriend and I didn’t want to waste time with someone I’m not really into, because that’s less time spent meeting new people and persuading personal interests.
I resolved to create some distance.

Another week passed without a word.  It was, yet again, Sunday.  I was standing behind the counter at work, willing the time to go by faster, when who should appear next to me? LipRing, of course.
“Hey, how’re you doing?” I asked with a big grin.
“Hi, I applied for a job here last week and was wondering if you’re hiring.”
My face fell – he actually had no idea who I was.  Granted I was wearing my glasses and had my hair straightened, but he completely did not recognize me.
I went bright red and felt lost for words.  I tried to explain that we may be hiring next week.
“I like you’re glasses,” he said, as he turned and walked away.
Did he recognize me finally?  Or was that a random compliment?  Even though I wasn’t all that into the guy, it made me feel entirely unmemorable and kinda crappy.
When I got home, I replayed the awkward scenario in my head over and over again.  Finally I messaged him, “Did you seriously not recognize me today?”
“I’ll admit, it took me a few minutes.”
He started trying to flirt with me, but I was entirely turned off.
At Summer Jams, my roommates all insisted I stay away.  After all, he barely spoke to me when I did spot him.  We all left early and I contemplated saying bye to him, he would probably persuade me to spend the night with him and I just was no longer into it.
I did receive a text at 3 am insisting I spend the night and next day with him.  Then a subsequent text the next afternoon apologizing for the booty call.

Another disappointment.  Maybe if I get desperate I’ll hit him up, otherwise it’s onto the next one.

0

Repeat Offender

The last couple weeks have been a blur.  A busy, hectic, stressful blur.  On top of a non-stop work schedule I was also struggling to get myself organized and packed.

On one such day I was riding my bike to work, calculating the amount of hours of work I had left when my phone started ringing.  My phone was in my pocket and I can talk through my headphones so I answered without looking at the call display.
“Hey, how are you?” asked the male voice on the other end.
“Who is this?” I hesitantly asked.
“It’s Matthew!” he exclaimed, clearly offended, “I can’t believe you don’t have my number anymore.”
“No, no, I have it.  Just on my bike so I can’t see who’s calling,” I countered. “Anyway, how’s it going?”
I wasn’t all that surprised to hear from him, he had been Snap Chatting me non-stop over the past month and I had partaken in the flirty banter.  I may have sworn off Matt months previously, but I had reconnected with him in the hopes of having wild passionate goodbye sex before I took off for my adventure.
He told me how excited he was to see me when I got back into town and we made small talk before I arrived at work and said goodbye.
What an interesting turn of events.

I worked my double and started to bike home when my phone chimed with the sound of a text message.  I peered down at the screen: It was from Jess.
“Hey, back for the weekend.  Are you in town?  I’d really like to see you before you go.”
I am not exaggerating when I say the last time I spoke to Jess was when we slept together nearly 3 months prior.  I hadn’t heard a peep from him, but I knew he had been away working the entire time so I didn’t think too much of it.
Damn, am I that good that the last couple guys I slept with are desperate to get in one last roll in the hay before I leave?  All I need is a message from Dan and I’ll be 3 for 3.
(I was slightly hopeful, but of course, that never came.)
Back at home, I began my reply:
“Long time no talk.  I leave Monday actually!”
“Damn!  We should overnight” he suggested playfully.
I sat on my bed for a long time just staring at my phone, trying to come up with a response.
The smart, responsible part of me reasoned that I was way too busy to host him.  But the horny and desperate part of me thought back to our last encounter with excitement.
Forget what you should or shouldn’t do.  What do you WANT to do?  I asked myself.
It didn’t take long for me to decide and I typed out a response:
“We should overnight.  How about tomorrow?”
“Cool, I’m in town with a friend though.  Can she crash?”
An unexpected obstacle.
“Sure, I work late but I’ll text you when I’m off.”


When I finished work, I sent Jess a quick message and began my journey home in the pouring rain.  When I walked into my house I saw Jess’ head stick around the corner, “Hey!” he said with a huge smile on his face.  He and his friend Ashley were hanging out, waiting for me to get home.  I suddenly felt overwhelming discomfort.  Was I supposed to entertain them?  Did she know what he had come here for?  Should we just immediately retire to the bedroom or should we have a bit more tact?
“I have a nice bottle of wine, if you guys wanna have some,” I suggested.
We drank the wine and chit-chatted, Ashley was really cool and I enjoyed hearing the two of them reminisce on childhood memories.
Jess rolled a joint for Ashley and I to smoke and I felt myself begin to relax.
I loudly vocalized how tired I felt.  Jess followed me downstairs to my bedroom.
We briefly caught each other up on our respective lives and then got down to business.  Once again, we only kissed twice and there was little to no foreplay.  It was exactly what I needed.
In the morning he made Ash and I breakfast and the two of them left to go surfing.  They invited me to join, but I bemoaned all of the packing I had to deal with.  We hugged, said our goodbyes and parted ways and I began attempting to sort out the chaos that was my bedroom.


I barely made it out of town in one piece, but somehow, despite all the procrastination, I pulled it off.  I said goodbye to most of the people I wanted to and stared out the bus window sadly at the passing scenery, wondering if I would ever return back to this magical place.

When I got back to my hometown and set up at my moms house I was bombarded with messages from Matt asking when we were going to hang out.  Now that I had gotten my kicks from Jess I didn’t feel the same enthusiasm about reuniting with Matt.  I felt bad about the way I had completely cut him out when I left town and did genuinely want to reconnect with him.  I knew if I saw him that I’d probably want to sleep with him and I just wasn’t sure if it was wise to go down that path again.  He and I had history, it wasn’t as simple as sex.  I made plans to go for coffee with him the day before I was leaving to visit my university friends.  We sipped our cappuccinos and he asked me if I wanted to smoke with him back at his house.  Since I was on a mission to smoke all the ganja I could before leaving the country and since I was enjoying his company, I agreed.  We sat on his deck listening to music and passing the pipe back and forth.  I decided to go home and start getting organized for my weekend in the city and he took it upon himself to join me.
Umm, okay?
Back at my mom’s (empty) house I packed while he tried to flirt with me.  I was still on the fence.
“Sorry to be rude, but I’m gonna quickly call my friend back, I missed his call earlier.”
He dialled and lifted his phone up to his ear, “Sorry I missed your call man.”
The volume was up so high I could hear his friends response from across the room, loud and clear as he said: “Yeah you were too busy fucking your girlfriend.”
Matt chuckled and responded: “Not yet, but soon enough man, soon enough.”
That was enough to make my decision for me.  Matt had not changed; he was still a pompous asshole who bragged about me to his friends and honestly believed he was in control of our relationship.
“I really need to get organized here, I have to ask you to leave,” I told him as sweetly as I could muster.  He looked shocked, but we hugged and parted ways.


Part 2:  Back in the City

Cut to Friday night.  My girlfriends and I were crowded around the mirror, primping and prepping for a night on the town.  I was determined to dress up, look like a lady and dance up a storm in the city.  I stepped out wearing a modest, black dress that hugged every curve and showed off my slender legs adorned in high leather boots.  My hair fell in beachy waves around my made-up face.  I hadn’t seen this glamorous side of myself in almost 6 months.  I looked damn good.
We met up with some friends at the pub and began to drink excessively.
“Oh my god, it’s that ginger that I made out with at your party!” Jane exclaimed.  “I feel like I should apologize and buy him a drink after how rude I was to him.” (An entire other story in itself.)  Off she went as I continued to slam drinks.  It was nearing midnight and I was desperate to go dancing.  I was dancing on the spot and calling out to Jane and Andi (who were busy chatting up Gingy and his friend.)  Jack laughed and pulled me in for a hug, “Get your girls, go dancing, find a sexy man and take him home with you.  You deserve it!” he told me.
I laughed, “I just want a dance, I’m not looking for a man,” I assured him.
I finally dragged my friends and their new tag-alongs downstairs to the club.

At the club, Jane and Gingy immediately disappeared, Andi disappeared shortly after and I was stuck with Gingy’s friend.  The friend was cute and nice enough, but he kept trying to cuddle with me.  While waiting for a drink at the bar a young guy approached me, “This is going to sound really weird, but I went to high school and elementary school with you, although I was 4 years younger and I was so totally in love with you growing up and I just had to tell you,” he said, starting away.
“Wait!” I called, “Who are you?”
We started to chat about elementary school and the like when suddenly the Friend grabbed my wrist and pulled me away, “What the hell are you doing?” I asked, “I was having a conversation with him!”
I sat the Friend down and told him straight up: “Look, I’m not gonna get with you, I’m not interested in you, I wanna go dance and do my own thing, so you may as well give up this chase now.”
“I can’t help it, you’re just so hot,” he complained.
“I know…” I said, still feeling insanely confident.  “Here…” I grabbed him by the collar, made out with him for 30 seconds and then pushed him away.
“Man you just made it so much worst,” he moaned.
I abandoned him to join Andi on the dance floor.  I’m used to dudes trying to cut in when I’m out doing my thing and that night was no exception.  But one such man immediately caught my eye.  This one was different: he was tall, blonde and insanely gorgeous.  The two of us started dancing up a storm; we were spinning and dipping and grinding and shaking.  Within minutes we were pressed up against the glass, passionately making out on the dance floor.  I felt 19 again.

The bar was closing and I went to gather my jacket while he got us some water.  We went up the street and he excused himself to go get his coat.  I stood with my friends, swaying back and forth, “Should I go home with him?” I asked them, “I really want to!”
“Do it!” Andi insisted, “He’s fucking hot.”
When he re-emerged we climbed into a cab.  No words needed to be spoken, we both knew it was going down.  In the cab, I asked as an afterthought: “Hey, what’s your name?”


There was no one home at his townhouse and the two us retired to his room and began to go at it.  He stripped down to reveal a chiseled body, covered in tattoos and the hugest dick I’d ever seen.  I was in heaven.  This is going to be AWESOME!  Oh how wrong I was.

The sex was… too rough… and too short.  5 minutes into it he stopped suddenly and stood up.
“The condom broke,” he informed me.
“So?  Put another one on and let’s keep going.”
“No, I’m done.  I’m not going to be ready again for a looooonnnggg time.”
“Wait, what?  It broke?  And your done?” My head was swimming.
“Don’t worry about it, there’s something we can get for you in the morning…”
I wasn’t concerned about that (I always have a back up form of birth control, thank you IUD!) I was more upset about the possibility of having anything less than a clean bill of health.  I pride myself on being very safe and careful and now all of that was destroyed.  While I lay there lost in my own thoughts, there were several knocks on the door.
To my shock and horror, he called out: “Come in!”
The door swung open and I dove under the duvet in shame.
His friends chatted with him at the door and then one asked, “Is there someone in your bed?”
I stuck my head out shyly.  “Hi,” I said timidly as they awkwardly introduced themselves.  They left and closed the door behind them.
“Do you want some chips and juice?” he asked excitedly, “I’ll get us some.  I have Dorrito’s Cool Ranch, Dorrito’s Spicy, Dorrito’s Original.”
“Anything besides Dorritos?”
“I have Miss Vickies!”
“Perfect.”
He disappeared in search of the chips while I tried to sort out this random turn of events.
He reappeared, chips in hand and started setting up Netflix.  There was a knock on the door again and a girl entered and informed him, “I’m going to pick up some stuff.  Do you want in?  Give me money.  Also, I need to borrow your scooter.”
Suddenly it made so much sense.  This guy wasn’t drunk.  He and his friends were ridiculously high on coke.  And about to do more, at 3 am.
“Shit, I forgot the juice, I’ll be right back!” he exclaimed excitedly and ran out.
This is all too much to deal with.  I didn’t sign up for chips and a movie, I signed up for spontaneous, random sex.  I’ve got to get out of here.
I started gathering all my stuff and getting my clothes on.  When he returned he seemed genuinely disappointed.
“You’re leaving?”
I walked out past all his friends and said a hasty goodbye.  He walked me to the front door.  I can’t remember if I left without a word or I may have said, “Well, it’s been interesting,” but my exit was awkward and uncouth.  I walked towards the street, while crying on the phone to Kennedy.
“Every time I try to have a one night stand it is SO disappointing!” I whined.  I cabbed to her friends house and the 3 of us smoked copious amounts of weed and talked about our nights.  I declared that the next time I slept with a guy, he was going to have to really work for it.  I don’t need a relationship, but some sort of sentiment or anticipation would be nice.


 

Now here I sit.  En route to New Zealand on a journey to find myself.  I have no solid plans, no expectations and have no idea what the future holds for me.  But I’m just going to go with the flow, say ‘Yes’ to every opportunity and hope for the best.

0

Hallow-why?

All I wanted for Halloween this year was to dance it up with my bestest of friends, but the night quickly went awry.

It started off fine: I had settled on dressing up as a lion (despite my earlier hissy-fit when I declared that I hated my costume) I had backcombed my hair into a fierce mane and done my makeup to match.  I was dressed to impress and determined to make out with a hot guy.  We went to a couple house parties and all my friends decided to do mushrooms, I hastily agreed although I wasn’t entirely on board.
We started towards the main party: a massive rave featuring multiple DJs on a property down the street.  As we walked we all began to feel the effects on the mush, pausing often to stare up at the moon and stars.

When we arrived Jack, Kathy, Kennedy, myself and Jack’s friend Derrick all promised not to lose one another.  “We’re on mushrooms and half of us don’t have phones… we have to stick together,” we rationalized.  So naturally within 5 minutes we lost Kathy and Jack freaked out and left.  Kennedy, myself and Derrick (who, by the way, is an absolute babe) were left.
“We HAVE to stay together” we swore once again.  We were all standing together talking amongst a bunch of different people, all the people began to disperse and suddenly only Derrick and I remained.
“Where the Hell is Kennedy?” I wondered aloud.
We screamed her name over and over again; we walked over to nearby groups of people, but there was no sign of her.  We circled around the party, calling her name repeatedly but there was no sign of her or anyone else I recognize.  Derrick and I made our way onto the covered dance floor to try and seek shelter from the sudden onslaught of rain, but it seemed everyone else had the same idea.  The dance floor had turned into a mosh pit and I was on the verge of getting trampled before we made our escape.
The rain was falling in buckets and we were both absolutely soaked, standing there at a loss.
“I don’t know what to do!”
“Maybe she went back to check on Jack?” Derrick suggested, “She was saying she was worried about him.”
“Maybe… I don’t see her anywhere.”
I took one last look around the party and then the two of us started back in the hopes of locating her.


 

Back at the staff accom house, Jack was home, but he was alone.
“Shit!” I cried, feeling myself begin to panic “We have to go back!  She’s not here!”
“She’ll know to come here when she can’t find you, lets just wait here for her to come back,” they both stated.
“No!” I cried, “She’ll think I just left her, I have to go back and find her!”
As I headed to the door, Jack cried out: “Wait… we’ll go with you.”
I got my rain boots from my house, threw on a rain poncho and headed back to the party with determination in my stride.
Back at the party every person I saw informed me that Kennedy was freaking out looking for me.  Finally I spotted her and the two us began screaming and embracing one another.
“You guys are fucked,” my brother remarked as he walked away in confusion.
Now to retrieve Jack (who was still too messed up to even enter the party) and inform him that we had found Kennedy and were staying at the party a little longer.  As we approached the entrance gates Kennedy skipped up and yelled “BOO” to some guy sitting under the gate tent.  He looked startled and then his eyes moved over to me.  He stood up immediately and rushed towards me to embrace me in a warm, genuine hug: Dan.
He looked… incredible.  He was wearing wired rimmed glasses, a plaid dress shirt and grey slacks with suspenders.  I’d never seen him in anything but a t-shirt and jeans, he looked taller and broader than usual and he did not have a DROP of rain on him.  Seriously?  Meanwhile, I looked like a drowned rat: my makeup was all down my face and my hair was puffy and yet somehow stringy.  We bantered back and forth about what our costumes were “supposed” to be, but I quickly excused myself as being terribly high and ran away.
My friends and I danced a while, Derrick and I were all over each other on the dance floor while staring up at the flashing lights and laughing hysterically.  Things started to get weird and I insisted we leave.  Back at Jack’s we sat around getting stoned and trying to chill out.  Derrick and I cuddled.  One of the guys from upstairs came down with a trashy looking female companion.  The two of them disrupted our peaceful vibe and declared that we should light off the two remaining fireworks.
Sure, we all agreed, one last shebang and then off to bed.
We went outside and he lit the first one and waved it around as it shot golden sparks into the air.  His trashy friend began doing a sexy firework dance beneath the falling flames.
Is this real life?
Trashy girl got distracted by some passing guys and started riding one’s long board down the hill… on her stomach.
“Okay, lets light off this last one,” he declared.  We stood in the driveway, waiting in anticipation.  A light shot up in to the sky and then EXPLODED with the loudest fucking bang.  The firework expanded across the entire nights sky, it was the hugest firework I had ever seen that wasn’t part of a professional display.  We all screamed and I ducked behind a car, shaking.  I felt like the power of the firework had shifted the stars.  With that we all said goodnight, I tried to discreetly invite Derrick to sleep in my bed, but my awkwardness got in my way so he retired to Jack’s van alone while Kennedy and I walked to my house together, pausing to stare up at glowing night sky.
Once warm and safe in my bed we began to relay the nights events.
“I can’t believe I saw Dan! I looked so shitty and he looked so great!” I bemoaned.
“That guy… he’s bad news for you.”
She had summed it up perfectly, there was no denying he was bad news.
We fell into a restless sleep.


 

The next day my hair was a disaster and I didn’t get myself close to enough time to comb it out and therefore had to rush to work with a haphazard, tangled mess of a bun.
I returned home, exhausted and sat down in Kathy’s room where we began trading stories from our Halloweens and wondering how we never saw each other once.
“I have to tell you something,” she said, smiling mischievously, “I saw Dan on the dance floor, he was talking about you… He said he doesn’t know what to do because he wants to be your friend and make amends with you and be on good terms before you go, but he feels like you hate him… And, I’m sorry, but I told him you felt the same way and that you wanted to talk to him and you were at the party…”
“Kathy!”
“I’m sorry!  But he seemed genuine and I think he was looking for you all night.”
For a second, my heart melted, because lately I had been thinking of reconnecting with him before I left.  I had been reminiscing about the fun times we’d had together and I realized that I was glad he had come into my life, despite everything else.
Kathy urged me to text him and I began to consider it.
Wait, no!  I chided myself, If he really wants to talk to me, he could just call or text me, or just talk to me… I live down the street for God’s sake!  And another thing… He knows that anything he says to Kathy will be relayed to me.  If I text him he doesn’t actually have to apologize or put in any effort and he gets an opportunity to try and hook up with me before I leave town.  What. The. Fuck.  No!!!!!

The night he left without even a goodbye was the moment I realized he was a selfish twat and decided I was done with him; we had not spoken since.  I had tried to be his friend before that night, I thought I could do it, but I realized I was just torturing myself.  I thought back to the pain I felt that first night in September and my heart solidified again.
I decided I to focus instead on getting organized for my trip… and possibly seducing Derrick while I still had the chance.


The next day I tried in vain to brush out my now dreaded hair.  I used a bottle of olive oil, an entire bottle of conditioner, a bottle of detangler spray, 4 hours of elbow grease and nearly broke my brush but it was no use.  I began to panic at the very real chance that I may have to cut out my hair… on the top of my head… close to my scalp.
I took a deep breath, my eyes welled up as I began cutting through the strands.

Kennedy showed up and tried to convince me to attend the lodge staff party, a poker night, to get stoned and eat all of the free food.  I put on a hat and agreed as I really needed a drink to console me.
It was Derrick’s last night night in town so I built up some liquid courage and stopped by Jack’s house.  I stayed up late watching a dumb movie and trying to flirt with Derrick.  I didn’t know how to go about asking him to spend the night with me so I kept making physical contact and commenting on how tired I felt.  We both headed off to bed and he tried to door of the van, “It’s locked… I guess I’m sleeping on the couch tonight.”
Now’s my opportunity!
I mustered up all of my courage.
“You could sleep at my house,” I suggested sheepishly. “I have a big comfy bed.”
“Uhhmmmm… yeah… sure,” he finally agreed after a long hesitation.
Oh my god, what have I said?  That was way too forward, he’s definitely not into it!
“Never mind,” I quickly responded, “That would be weird…”
“Okay, well have fun in New Zealand,” he said while giving me a fast hug and turning towards the house.  “I’m sure we’ll meet again someday.”
Damn!
I walked home sadly, cursing myself and him for being far too awkward.
I think I may need to work on my flirting skills.

1

Negative Nancy

Shortly after I decided to swear off men, the energy surrounding this beautiful place shifted. I can pinpoint the exact moment I felt it.

The night of Violet’s birthday my roommate Kathy had joined me and actively voiced her desire to do mushrooms, she even had a gram all ready to go. I assured her that Violet would bring plenty of mush and we’d all partake with her.  A few of us arrived down at the beach and began making a fire.  Kathy began growing concerned that it was getting late and that she wouldn’t have enough time to come down before she had to go to work, so she decided to eat hers.  I accompanied Violet back to staff housing and made my enquiry.
“Dude! I just sold the last of it! I have one left though, you can have it.”
Not wanting to leave Kathy tripping alone at a party full of people she didn’t know, I did what any good friend would do: I ate that mushroom capsule.
The crowd around the fire was growing and I could feel myself getting higher.  People’s faced became covered with geometric patterns, but yet I was still engaging in full and sensical conversations.  Kathy and I went on a pee mission and when we entered the bushes we both gasped.  All the leaves were glowing neon green and appeared as thousands of hands reaching up, beckoning me to lie on them.  I collapsed backwards onto the awaiting hands.
“Wow,” Kathy remarked, “Your hair looks like it’s alive, growing into the bushes. You’re like… their queen.”
That was my last happy memory of the night.

Back at the fire, I was continuing to have in-depth conversations whilst staring off into space when a couple guys started talking to us, one was named “Alex.”
“Do you wanna go splash in the water?” He asked me.
“Of course!” I exclaimed and the two of us began skipping out to the ridiculously low tide.
“How do you know Violet?” I asked.
“I don’t,” he said, “I just moved here after being discharged from the military… Should I marry her?” On the way back to the fire he picked me up and threw me over his shoulder and began running with me.
“Stop!” I screamed, “Put me down!”
“Ask me anything!” He commanded as he released me. “Ask me how many men I’ve killed, go ahead, ask me!”
“No,” I stated, “Are you just fucking with me because I’m high?”
“What? No, why would I do that?”

Back at the fire I tried to stay away from him. Kathy and I sat off to the side of the now 50+ person bonfire and listened to my friend play guitar.  Suddenly “Alex” returned and started screaming at my friend to play Bob Dylan.  When my friend ignored him he screamed, “You people are all fucking retarded!” and stormed off.
“Oh my God, I’m so scared of that guy!” I cried, “He’s going to kill me!”
“It’s okay,” Kathy insisted, “We’ll be fine, you’re just high.”
We made our way through the crowd and found our beautiful Kennedy, all swollen and chipmunked after having her wisdom teeth removed, chewing away on weed fudge.  The 3 of us ran out onto the wet sand and towards the surf and admired the glowing phosphoresces that appeared under every step we took.  We stared back towards the lodge, the sky was overcast, but the stars were still shining through in an eery, sinister way.  In the distance, the various lighthouses cast ominous lights. Something felt different, not right.
Back at the fire Kathy became fearful of “Alex” and insisted she and I go back with the now departing Kennedy.  I was in the midst of smoking a joint in the hopes of calming my nerves and promised I would return shortly in the company of my friend Jack.  I assured her that he was completely sober and would keep me safe.  The two of us began our trek back and sure enough “Alex” appeared and began to say some hostile things to Jack.  We both walked away, “Man that guy’s weird,” Jack commented.
“He’s the one that’s going to skin me!”

On the way back and as I came down, Jack began to retail me with ghost stories from the very bay we’d just been partying in.  Apparently, a tourist shot himself in the head there and on occasions a spooky presence had manifested in that spot.  Suddenly he stopped. “Do you hear that?”
“What?” We listened carefully and in the distance we could hear a grinding metal sound.
“A bike?” I suggested.
“Maybe, but whoa, what’s that?” He pointed up beyond the tree-line where two bright lights were circulating towards the sky in perfect unison.
“What the hell is that?” I asked.
“Headlights,” he declared.
“But why are they moving in a circular motion like that?”
“They’re headlights, let’s go!”

Back at the lodge, Jack went up to get a drink of water from the hose while I sat on a beach chair waiting for him.  A little ways down the beach I could see a bright blue light.  Although I was coming down, I was still having weird visuals and I couldn’t tell if the light was coming towards me or was on a stationary post.  It seemed to be moving, but only up and down and if it belonged to a person, shouldn’t they be close enough that I could see them?
“Hey Jack,” I called as he came down the stairs, “Is that light on a post or a person?”
“I don’t know, but it’s coming closer!” The two of us ran up the path with Jack’s blanket wrapped around us for protection.

Back at staff housing we were all reunited and safe, but I still felt uneasy. As I tried to sleep I felt fearful that “Alex” would find me. I wracked my brain for any information I may have given him: that I was staying at staff accom, that I worked at the lodge, the neighbourhood I lived in, but I came up with nothing. I assured myself that I was safe and that tomorrow would be a better day, but the negativity began to grow and fester.

To be continued…