So… Off we went. Dennis had a white truck parked in the parking lot and as I opened the door, soda cans and old subway wrappers fell out and into the street. Dennis didn’t seem to notice. “Time to clean the car?” I asked. “What? Oh yea? I guess.” Emelie rolled her eyes. “I can’t believe you’re taking me in some strangers car!!” she muttered. “And a dirty car at that!” She was feisty, that’s for sure. I dropped Emelie off at the hotel with the promise of all the sugar in all of the land and told my dad I’d be out for a little while. We drove to a surf break not too far away and parked along the shore. The waves were way too big for me and the break was crowded with local surfers fighting for the best waves. “Are you ok to chill here?” he asked. “Yes, sure”. I said. “Cool”, he replied and then opened the passenger door, stood up and proceeded to take all his clothes off. Let me repeat that. He. Took. All. His. Clothes. Off. Changing from his jeans into board shorts, he got naked – butt naked – just like that! It was like he’d forgotten I was in the car. The funniest thing was, he didn’t seem to notice that this was slightly out of the ordinary or care at all if anyone around him could see. The whole thing took all of five seconds and then he was off, paddling out into the distance. I couldn’t believe it. I’d never met a person so… Carefree. It seemed like nothing bothered him, like nothing was complicated in his world. There was something about him that was so intriguing, and so simple at the same time.
I sat on the shore and watched him surf until the sun set and it got too dark to see. As he paddled back in, I felt butterflies in my stomach. Why was I feeling so nervous around this guy? It’s not like this was the first cute surfer guy I’d ever hung out with. He dried himself off and sat down next to me on the beach. “Wanna go eat something?” he asked. “Yes! I’m starving”. We went to a Thai place and for the life of me, I can’t remember what we talked about. We sat for hours, eating vegetable rolls and yellow curry, drinking Singha’s, just talking. Laughing. A lot. When we’d finished the food I didn’t want to leave. Neither did he. “Wanna go for a drive?” he asked. “Sure”. We drove with the windows down, his hand on the clutch, my feet on the dashboard. I wanted to hold his hand but I didn’t. We got to a lookout and stepped out of the car. What looked like a thousand lights glittered in the distance, surrounded by the dark of the ocean. I sat down in the back of the truck, and he turned toward me. Suddenly we ran out of words. I wanted to kiss him. I wanted him to kiss me. The air was electric. He stepped closer and for the longest time we stayed like that, close, but not touching. Just looking at each other. I felt like I was on the cusp of something momentous and the butterflies I felt in my stomach just wouldn’t settle. I couldn’t understand it but a part of me knew; if I kiss this man… There is no turning back.
“Maybe we’ll see some shooting stars”, Dennis said. “I’ve never seen one”, I responded. “Never?” “Never”.
I looked up and a dark blue canvas littered with light looked back at me. Even with all my travels I’d never seen a shooting star, strangely. I decided to make another wager with the universe. “If we see a shooting star tonight it’s a sign and I’ll kiss him” I told myself. A second later a bright light went off above us and a star shot across the sky, leaving a line of bright orange glittering light drawn in it’s trace. Suddenly, his lips were on mine and time stopped. I don’t know who kissed whom… But I know he tasted like salt water and sunshine.
We saw two shooting stars that night and until this day, seven years later, I’ve only ever seen one with him.
A part of me knew it then and there. Life would never be the same.