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The Birthday Dance - Friday, Dec. 20, 2019
Thursday, Apr. 04, 2019 @ 9:30 pm
Sitting on a bench, looking out over the water. The air is damp with spray blowing off of the elaborate fountain. I ignored all rules and met up with him after drinking whisky with others in the boardroom after work. Rain starts to fall.
“Do you want to come up?” he asks.
Two blocks away, he fobs open a gate. I look across the street, and we are in front of the coffee shop that I have been going to lately to sit and write in the light-drenched space.
He pulls open the front door of a glassy condo tower, the tallest in the area. The lobby is posh with a concierge that nods to us. We step into the elevator and I look at him and wonder what I’ve missed. I know the rental market. I slowly realize that he makes a lot more money than his outward appearance suggests. He presses the button for floor thirty-six.
He opens the door to his unit, and my suspicion is confirmed. There are two bathrooms. We are perched up high in the sky, a bird's eye view facing to the west: the city, punctuated with other glassy towers, and the ocean strewn with freighters.
The condo is sparsely decorated. I can tell that no woman has ever lived here. We sit on the couch and talk. Hours pass. He asks if I wish to stay the night, and my tiredness and the proximity to my office cloud my judgement.
“How long was your longest relationship?” he asks, our legs tangled together.
He responds with a long pause, and then says, “That’s a good sign.”
“I heard something recently,” I reply. “Don’t congratulate someone on their anniversary before understanding what the relationship has done to their soul.”
“And how’s dating going for you?” he persists.
“You’re my first.”
“You are lucky that I’m your first. You should hear what my friend Jess tells me about the dating scene here. I guess your relative lack of experience explains a few things. You are refreshingly open and honest. You don’t seem jaded. You are responsive.”
We sleep with our bodies pressed against each other. We fit together in a way that I never felt with Daniel. The warmth of his soft body, wrapped around me. The sounds of the city are distant, so many floors down. Pale light, the glow from the city, filters through the sunshades. I sleep through until the morning, until a cacophony of hammering begins from the various construction sites.
In the morning I brush my teeth and wash my face. I retrieve an earring from the coffee table. I look out the window and realize that I’m looking down on Timathy’s job site. He’s down there laying pipe, and I’m up here on the thirty-sixth floor, attempting to fix my hair into something presentable.
Peter follows me to the door, kisses me goodbye, and I walk the three blocks to work.
As the day progresses, I become more and more unsure of myself. I desperately want to know what he’s thinking. I question why I’m adding drama into my life before everything else is settled. Maybe I’m testing myself, to see what feelings come up when with another man. Do I have the capacity or desire for a casual relationship?
I’m laying on the couch on my stomach, chin propped on my elbows, staring out at English Bay, and Peter jumps on me from behind and devours my neck.
“You make me feel attractive,” I tell him.
“You are attractive.”