Dimming of the Day

July 22, 2013 at 11:00 am (Sweet sticky things)


I recently finished a 68-hour work week. Before that, 54 hours. Daddy’s getting a new pair of shoes.

Something’s up. I spent lunch hour in the park, listening to sappy love songs and trying not to cry. Sometimes life seems so good, you know it can’t just keep going on that way. But I can hope.

Rain has been living with me. We arrive home late and leave together; I go to work while she does her thing. We meet up throughout the night, and catch the bus home together. Abandoning the front, we’ve taken to sitting in the back, with her sleeping on my shoulder as I stare out the window. It’s a ten-minute walk through Felony Flats to my house. The neighbors see us in the daylight, and while I don’t notice, Rain thinks they stare. They do, but not because we’re a mixed couple, or because Rain is black.

It’s because we look so damn good together.

I carded a young couple the other night. “How old you think we are?” the guy asked. I don’t usually play this game, but they were out-of-towners out of their element and I wanted them to relax. Rain was standing next to the porno rack, sleepy.

“I’d guess you’re thirty, and she’s about twenty-five. But she don’t look it.” I smiled at the petite Asian girl, whose demure smile was contradicted by mischievous eyes.

“Damn, bro, spot on!” Dude-30 bumped my knuckles.

“How old you think she is?” I asked them, nodding toward Rain. She appeared to be dozing. It was 1:30 AM.

Asian Girl got wide-eyed, a look that said, “You don’t really expect me to discuss that woman’s age while she’s standing there, do you?”

“It’s okay, we’re together. Just don’t say sixty.”

Rain gave me a slow look.

The Asian Girl said, “I think she is 34 and you are 36.” Dude 30 nodded in agreement.

“You hear that, babe? And that’s after the second double-shift!” She’d been right there with me, most of the time. It earned me a wink.

The Asian couple left, knowing old doesn’t mean less than beautiful.

Working into the overnight, we see a lot of sketchy types. The folks who live on the sidewalks and have nowhere else to go. They amuse themselves waiting for last call, and as the bars empty they move in for the day’s last round of panhandling. Even Rain said, “I’m gonna go down in front of the strip joint and flash some leg, see if I can get some old drunk’s hopes up.” She was back in five minutes, and made five bucks without showing or giving up anything. Gotta love alcohol once in a while.

As dawn broke and we made our way home, we held hands walking up the bus mall. Her head on my shoulder, the quiet walk up the road, the quiet calm as we discard the day and curl up in spoon position on my single bed. For a long time I feared having her with me; now I’m beginning to wonder what I’d do without her.

As I get those funny burning feelings in my chest, (mushy love stuff, not acute angina, although she does have a cute- oh never mind) I wonder if my brain and my heart will be on the same page some day. She’s not perfect, but neither am I, and who ever is? I enjoy her company, immensely, we have fun together even when times are sucky. She’s starting to make me feel like I’m her man, not just her coin-purse-that-delivers.

I’ve taken to leaving her at home to sleep as long as she wants, and to follow me into work if she wants to. Most days she comes later in the evening, strolls around and says hi to her friends. She’s taking steps to make a source of tension in our relationship better, and as I see progress I can only feel my love for her grow stronger. We may not end up together forever, but I know we love each other enough that we will never not be friends.

And so, my ebony princess, as you sleep I will play this song, cry a little bit and wash away all evidence in a cold shower. And when I see your eyes playing peekaboo over my counter later, the smile erupting from my face will be spontaneous and heartfelt.

Much like my feelings for you have always been. ❤ Outie

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