Sunday, January 13, 2008

Sunday Scribblings #7 - The Date

The theme for Sunday Scribblings this week is "The Date". Oh, the timing of this theme. I wish I could tell you, but for now, I give you this (and yes, it is fiction):

First Date

She stands at the mirror and meticulously applies her make-up. Not a hair out of place, dressed to the nines, she is ready. Nervous anticipation builds within her, and she takes a deep breath. It's been a while since she's done this and she's not quite sure if she's ready, but it's time. It's time to face it head on and move on with the rest of her life.

Grabbing her jacket and purse, she heads out the door. It is a casual meeting this time, coffee, chit chat, in a public place. Everything planned just so, but with an air of non-challance. She arrives a bit early and chooses the perfect table. By the window, so she can have a bit of distraction, something to talk about should the conversation go stale, and yet private enough in the corner should the conversation lend itself to more intimate topics. Ordering an espresso, she pulls out her book and begins to read. She's never been good at waiting, so she will immerse herself in her novel and hope in this way, he'll arrive before she even realizes it.

Her coffee arrives, and she surveys the room as she sips it. A group of college kids sits in a corner booth, working on a term paper hovering over each other, shooting off ideas and typing vigourously on their laptops. An elderly couple sit quietly, looking at each other with tenderness earned from decades of a love affair youngsters would never comprehend. A mother juggles a baby with a bottle and a toddler with chocolate chip residue all over his hands. The door opens and she looks up. Not him.

She settles back into her chair and reopens her book. Instantly she becomes immersed in the story again, and before long, she's lost track of time, of her surroundings, of the reason she is here. It is only a while later, much later, that she realizes she's read quite a few chapters now, and her coffee is long gone, and she still sits alone. The elderly couple has gone. So has the mother and her children. The college kids are still immersed in their studies, but a whole new crop of customers has filled the seats around her. And he? He's nowhere to be seen.

She looks at her watch. He's not just late, he's obviously not going to show. Checking her phone for messages, she finds none. So there it is, she's been stood up.

She signals the waitress and requests her bill. Gathering her things, she sighs. And this one seemed so promissing. She remembers again why she stopped dating so long ago. The games people play seem so childish to her. "We should know better at this age", she thinks. She smiles, pays for her coffee, leaves a generous tip, and leaves.


Penelope Anne said...

This is a beautifully written statement on life. I had that feeling how it would end, but needed to read to the end to know for sure.

Penelope Anne

keith hillman said...

What a lovely piece. I felt like an observer at another table. Strangely my piece is very similar to yours - only the ages are different!
Love you to take a look!

paisley said...

doesn't that just beat all,, you just wonder why why why people do things like that,,, not show i mean..... this was very well done.....

Anonymous said...

You've captured every detail so well, I felt like I was sitting there and observing this happen, rather than reading it from afar.
Beautifully written, I loved it.

I'm glad she left with a smile, it sounds like she wasn't prepared to let this get her down. A strong lady, by the sounds of it!

tumblewords said...

Glad you shared this - reminds me of something I know. Smile.