I have to be careful about this one. Very, very careful. But let’s give it a shot.
Balls: Don’t worry, I’m here to make sure you’re ok.
tWBS: Hey, that’s mighty nice of you!
Balls: And to make sure you don’t fuck up.
tWBS: Asshole. Ok fine, let’s just get this over with…
In early 2016, I had made plans to drive cross country and back. See some things/sites/sights I had never seen, etc. But mostly just to get away and drive the open road for a bit. Hit California for a while, and then drive back to North Carolina. These plans were made when I had barely just begun here at DFO, actually.
My plans were for Dave to take me across country and back during most of the month of July 2016, but before that, in April of 2016, I was at the beach in North Carolina. I was online writing something. Can’t remember what now. Hell, I can barely remember what I wrote last week. Just like the rest of you.
The Promising Beginnings
I had been out on the beach that day. I came back in and showered, then powered up the laptop to start writing some kind of stupid shit or another. And when I fired up the laptop I checked email. There was an unexpected one there. It was from someone I had interacted with casually online up to that point, but not to any deep degree. Let’s call her….. well, probably better to just not call her anything I guess.
Balls: Wait, can I name her?!?
tWBS: OH HELL NO!
I read her email. Apparently she had seen some of my comments. Some of the users on that blog were having pet issues and I had guided them as best I could from a distance. But when she read those comments, well she realized that I am a veterinarian. And she became very excited by this. I didn’t fully know why at that point, but I emailed her back and told her yes, I am.
She emailed me back a short time later and explained that her mother is a veterinarian also. And that she is in the biomedical field as well. And at that point we began talking by email. Pretty much daily.
Then, a short time later, we began talking by telephone. And it didn’t take very long for it to become….well I guess the best way to say it is that we began to talk about personal things. We were very comfortable with one another it seemed. And then, it became obvious that we were becoming “emotionally attached” to one another.
Balls: I do appreciate the use of quotation marks here.
tWBS: And then it became romantic.
Balls: Are we taking phone sex? We’re talking phone sex, aren’t we? Didya do some role playing? Like you’re the vet and she’s the dog owner that can’t pay the bill?
tWBS: No comment. Also, you’re such a perv!
Balls: YOU’VE MET ME! YOU KNEW I’D ASK THESE TYPES OF QUESTIONS!
tWBS: Stop yelling and let me continue.
At which point, my cross country drive became more about getting to California as quickly as possible to see her and find out if there was anything really there. Anything to this feeling we both seemed to be feeling, even though up to this point it had only been all from a distance.
So, on 6 July, 2016….
Balls: When did you become European/ Canadian?? What’s this number in front shit?
tWBS: DUDE!!!!! SHUTUP!
Soooooo…..Dave and I set out headed west. To find out together. We arrived in California on the 9th.
I already knew she had plans with friends that day. She was just finishing up a …. (I need to be careful here) …. a professional obligation let’s say.
Balls: Incall or outcall?
tWBS: Oh come on!!!! Fuck you. You’re not being very helpful.
Anyway…..as I was trying to say…. She was trying to make a major life decision for what to do next in her future. So I suppose her day that day was a sort of going away party. When she found out I had arrived in California a day early, she left the party and came directly to the hotel where I was staying. Though to her credit she did call first, LOL.
And when I saw her for the first time it was fabulous. Comfortable. Like we’d known each other for years.
We spent nearly every waking moment together for the next two weeks. Doing silly little things. Sometimes very boring things. Sometimes not even talking but just sitting together in silence. I fell in love with her one Sunday. 17 July I believe. She wasn’t feeling well, and all we did was just sit and watch movies. I helped her while she was feeling badly, or at least tried to. Getting her what she needed/wanted so she wouldn’t have to get up, etc., while she was feeling badly.
But we were there. Together. Committed it seemed.
The next day was absolutely bar none, the best day of my adult life.
Balls: Anal? Anal.
tWBS: Dude!!!!!! No!!!!
(but yes it had been discussed if I’m being completely honest)
The evening of the 17th, we drove up to Valencia. The reason being, to go to Magic Mountain. It was my idea, and we had talked about it before I even left to drive out west. When she wasn’t feeling well early on the 17th I thought we’d have to cancel. But nope, she was all in. And by the time we arrived at the Hilton just outside the park that night, she was feeling better. She even reverse spooned me as we settled in to sleep that night. I never slept so well in my life. Then, on the morning of the 18th, we woke up and went to Magic Mountain.
Best. Fucking. Day. Of. My. Life.
I paid the extra so we wouldn’t have to stand in lines and could ride everything as often as we wanted. And we did. We had so much fun together. We were like two teenagers. It was….amazing.
Now, to back up just a bit, when things became obviously romantic earlier, though still from the distance before I drove out, I had sent her a link to this song…
I like John Legend a lot. I think he’s a very good pianist and musician in general. Plus, that song was pretty much perfect for how we both seemed to feel about one another. But when I sent her the link (before I had ever laid eyes on her in real life as I said) …. Well she sort of made fun of me. I can’t remember exactly what she said but she blew it off. But not in a mean way. But when the sun was setting that night at Magic Mountain in Valencia and we were holding hands and leaving the park, that song happened to come on the park’s PA system. I looked over at her and saw her mouthing the words. I smiled but said nothing.
Then we drove back “home” and spent the next several days together still. And it was still fabulous.
But as I said earlier, she had been contemplating a major life choice for a while. One that would continue to keep us apart for at least two years if she chose it. But she really wanted to do it. I could tell. And who am I to tell her not to?
Balls: Easy. No, I don’t want you to get a penis.
tWBS: DUDE!!!!!!! You are not helping.
So I told her “You have to do it”. We talked about it. Made plans to make it work. And then have a life after she finished it. And I really thought we could survive the time and the distance.
Balls: A Guy Called Gerald nods his head knowingly.
Anyway…… She had a conference she needed to go to on the 23rd. And I needed to start heading home. So before daybreak on 24 July, I packed up, checked out, and headed out.
Sort of ironic that that photo was taken on the saddest day of my life, only days after the happiest, huh?
A storm rolled in just after that photo was taken. It knocked out all communications in the area. Cell, telephone, you name it. I tried multiple times to call out to her. And by all accounts, she said she tried to call me as well.
But here’s the thing about that.
When I was able to get in touch with her again the next day she was freaked out. Told me she thought I didn’t love her anymore when I wouldn’t answer the phone. I explained and told her no, that what had happened was just a glitch in the communications on the south rim because of a storm. I’m sorry.
But by then I was halfway through ColorAdo. And needed to get home within two days. I couldn’t go back at that point.
Then she told me this….
I left my conference early and came back to the hotel and sat in the parking lot smelling your shirt and cried (I had given her an NCSU t-shirt to sleep in). I was hoping you hadn’t left yet. If you’d have still been there and asked me to, I’d have chucked all of it and run away with you.
I don’t know if she truly meant it. And I try not to think about it anymore. But hearing her say that was…. what’s the word? Heavy. It weighed heavy on my mind for a long time.
Balls: You can’t play the “What If” game. It will drive you nuts. Plus, freak storm at the Grand Canyon? I know you don’t believe in God, but maybe that was the universe’s way of tapping you on the shoulder and saying, “Buddy, why don’t you let this one go?”
tWBS: Easy for you to say that now, asshole! And I didn’t say “freak” storm.
Balls: True enough, but I’ve gone through enough shit to realize that sometimes you can meet the right person at the wrong time and vice versa. And it’s all out of your control.
tWBS: I already knew my timing has always sucked. That doesn’t help.
Balls: I know, buddy, I know.
This story is not over yet, but this seems like a good stopping point. And frankly, I’m getting sad. And I have to go punch Balls in the head a few times.
We’ll pick it up again next week with…
Pt 2 – Everything goes to shit.
(just like always)