missed opportunites

I was away in Boston for the weekend to see Evie, so I don’t have anything prepared for today, but you are in luck. I am giving you something from my personal archives. It was written on September 14, 2008 about a trip I had taken to Boston sometime after graduating from college and sometime before I moved to New York. Enjoy.
~beatrix of christmas present

I’m pretty sure I met my soulmate once. And by met I actually mean sat with in very close proximity without saying a word.

I was taking a morning flight from Boston to Atlanta, and they asked for volunteers to give up their seats in exchange for ticket vouchers. I’m always hoping that will happen, but it never does unless I have something very pressing and important to do at the other end or have someone practically on the way to pick me up from the airport. Not this time. So. . score.

Then you know that game you play with yourself while you’re waiting for a flight? The one where you sit there and think, “I guess that I will I end up sitting next to that incredibly attractive and well-dressed fellow there reading that interesting magazine”? But then you lose the game and wind up sitting next to a chubby guy who immediately falls asleep with his mouth open and taking up one third of your allotted space or an old lady with a scratchy sweater who doesn’t speak English and gets her tv screen stuck on or some guy who enlightens you on how to fly a plane yourself, complete with a full-on reenactment? Well, this one time I won.

I picked this guy with a square jaw and a cap, and when I got on the plane he was. . . right there, taking something out of his bag then putting it in the overhead bin. And I realized that I had made a great choice because his beefy shoulder was just the absolute perfect height on which to lie my head. But I didn’t do that. Then he sat next to the window, and for the first and only time in my entire life, I was happy to be in the middle seat-- next to him. Ding ding ding. Winner again.

So that’s not all. The things that he had taken from his bag? The Wall Street Journal and East of Eden. He flipped through the Journal, then stuck it in the seat pocket. Nothing too exciting, but at least he probably had a job, right? The Steinbeck book, though? That’s my favorite book. . . No kidding. And he sat there and read it for almost two hours. With his arm well over the armrest, pressing against mine. And I didn’t move my arm-- he felt amazing and I was in love. I just sat there and pretended to read, wishing I’d brought something a little smarter and trying to talk myself into saying “You know, that’s my favorite book.” so we could start a conversation and live happily ever after.

I spent the entire trip counting down how long I had left to finally talk to him, but I couldn’t make the words come out. It was over all too soon, and I had to pull my arm away from him so I could put my stupid book back in my bag. I don’t even remember seeing him at baggage claim.

So I’m pretty sure that’s why I’m alone now. I was supposed to meet my soulmate on a plane between Boston and Atlanta, and I didn’t take the chance that fate handed me. It’s a sad story. And if I’d talked to him, I’d probably be with him right now, eating a lovely dinner off our wedding china instead of eating take-away pizza out of the box.

~beatrix of christmas past

and, as i thought this post needed even more italics, i got one of those twitters. we can be friends and stuff: beatrix_here
~beatrix of christmas future

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72suburbs said...

I met mine in front of the USC Dental School one afternoon. I was reading an ad on a bulletin board, one of those free-standing, double-sided kinds. He was apparently reading an ad on the other side, because we stepped out from behind the board at the same time and practically bumped noses. Green eyes, green scrubs. Tall. Just perfect.

But I stood there slack-jawed instead of saying something charming. So he walked around me and into the dental school and there went my own wedding china.

Kate said...

I sat next to mine while waiting for a table at a restaurant with friends. I accidently bumped his arm, turned to apologize, and fell in love. But words hid in my throat, and off he went...
A year later, I tripped on the sidewalk in a different city and fell into HIM. I was so dumfounded and embarrassed, I mumbled a quick thanks and moved on...
About a year after that I attended a concert. I really had to pee, and the Men's was empty... or so I thought. This time he said, "Are we going to keep doing this?"
We've been married for 6 years, and I still love bumping into him........

curly su said...

East of Eden is my favorite book too. And, I love Kate's story... kind of makes me believe in fate, or something of the sort...