Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Summer Night: Maple Drive



I tossed some asparagus into the pan and started cooking furiously. I say furiously because I was excited. It was 9 and I had barely eaten for myself. Ciera said she was coming back, off work early. In the time that I had waited for her arrival I had basically turned myself off, hiding in my room watching movies. It wasn't glorious in any sense, I hibernated for the time that she disappeared. I had an odd sense; I really wanted to be around her tonight.

So I was understandably enlivened when she texted to announce her arrival. I think Mama noticed because she made a point of excusing herself as soon as was polite. But she seemed to always do that.

Ciera burst through the door in her usual fashion, full of things to share from her day. I was still in the middle of preparing the asparagus. I tossed it on a plate and sat down across from her at the table. She started her story. It went like this:

There was another hostess today and every word that came from her mouth dripped with disdain and condescension. She seemed overly burdened to do her own job; things like seat people or be friendly or even help waiters get even numbers of tables. A couple asked how long it would take to be seated, and it clearly wasn't a very long wait and she said, with every syllable rolling out of her mouth lazily as if speaking were a terrible request, “uhh, huh, I gueeeeessss it willll beee liiike forty five minuuutess.”

Ciera said that was the first day she wasn't happy to be doing her job. I listened happily. I had watched the first season of Archer on Netflix; a good show but not as exciting to relay as Ciera's stories. Ciera finished eating and we quickly made our way to the Raccoon Lodge. The place is quickly becoming our haunt. It is close by and fun. We drank a beer outside in the cool air, enjoying each other's company and speaking about life goals. There were empty picnic tables on the lawn and a large party tent with more tables in a patio area behind the bar. We were the only ones there really. The conversation drifted between serious and hilarious, it was a moment where we genuinely were in each other's presence, taking in a glorious setting.

We went inside and got a second round of drinks, played darts until closing. We closed the tab and walked to the elementary school. Once there we messed around on the playground equipment; being kids again and generally enjoying being the only ones there. I felt free and distinctly picturesque. The romanticized American life was mine for a moment.

We sneaked back into the house and went to bed a bit tipsy and thoroughly satisfied with our lives. The next day I would be going to the beach house.