After I broke up with Al in 99... we still kept in contact for a long time..even having a few sexual-capades. We've never gone long without one of us calling the other to see how they're doing...except last year...
He's always been funny. Someone who loves to tease. When I jumped back on the dating scene, I got used to sedated type guys. I think back ...over these dates and the short relationships and realize that I thought of them as boring. Even if they're fun to talk to or even get my jokes (some didn't), I still kept waiting for something from them..something that never happened.
Then in walks Al...back into my life and the wildness begins...and I love it. I'm never bored, even if I predict what he's going to do..I still love it.
I got to his house fairly early Saturday. I wasn't inside for long when he said, "Let's go." We took the Al-mobile (my nickname for his car) and went to look at houses. His house is very large...and too much for him. He's going to rent his house and find a smaller place to buy--good investment. We're looking for a fixer-upper. He likes to do handywork and has a eye for detail.
As we were driving through one neighborhood, we came to a traffic light and had to wait for it to turn green. Al said, "Where does this road go?" (He was referring to the road that was perpendular to us.
I had no idea. "I don't know."
"But you said you knew Fayetteville." He sat staring at me, eyebrows raised. He expected an answer. I knew he was semi-teasing me...
so I said, "It goes that way (pointing left with my right fore-finger) and that way (pointing right with my left fore-finger)."
He stayed silent...staring at me. I stared back and suddenly started laughing. He continued to stare. I saw him pull in his upper lip to keep from laughing. There was a guy standing on the corner with his dog. Al rolls down his car window and says, "Hey Bud, do you need a girlfriend? I've sell you mine...cheap."
We burst into laughter and I looked at him and said, "You have to admit it, Al. That was funny."
"Oh yea. It was a "Sherrie" answer." He grinned at me and we continued our journey when the light changed to green.
After we did our errands... we went back to his place. I was in the process of cleaning his kitchen when he annoucned that he needed to go to the grocery store because his cousin Dennis and Dennis' girlfriend Christine (who works with Al) were coming over later. Al wanted to cook something. I gave him my cell phone, told him to take it with him. I know Al. He'll forget what he needs and will have to make 3 trips. But if he has a phone handy, he can call and ask me...because he told me what he needed to get...and I secretly wrote it down.
He was surprised I handed it over. I guess he thinks I have stuff to hide. I don't. There are numbers in the address book that are unfamiliar to him, but they're my business and if he questions me about them, I'll answer truly. Just because we're together doesn't mean that our life before stopped. It didn't. I have friends, just like he does...and it doesn't mean I don't love him. It just means I have a life outside of him.
Al called about 4 times... like I knew he would. I didn't mind. He tried to fool me by disguising his voice. It didn't work. But when his cousin Dennis called...on his cell phone. I was fooled for a moment. Thought it was Al at first, but when he didn't start laughing, I knew it was his cousin.
When Al got in, he called Dennis and they set up a time. I finished tidying the house and rushed to change into something nice and fuss over my hair and face a bit. Al cooked up blackened catfish and some Octopus fritters. I made cole slaw with a hint of blue cheese in it. Plus some honey and bacon baked beans. It was all so yummy.
I did the prep work, Al did the cooking. So when our guests arrived, they went in and I was left to entertain them. Al stepped in and said, "Sherrie and her father own a photography studio. She does photographic restorations." Then he disappeared.
This opened up a topic and they asked questions. Christine said, "Allen told us at work that you are an artist. That 99 % of the art on his walls was done by you. Which ones are they?" I showed her some. Too modest to show all of them. Don't know why the knowledge that Al bragged on my talents humbled me.
Then Dennis asked, "Did you meet Allen in school?"
I told him no. Christine pressed the issue. "So how did you meet him?"
"I met Allen in early March of 95 at a sports pub. We noticed each other for a few weeks. Once I was playing pool at a table beside the one he was playing at. I was standing beside him, watching my friend take a shot when I noticed that Allen was staring at me out the corner of his eye. His face was towards his table but his eyes weren't. I turned and smiled at him and he quickly turned back to his table... caught and not wanting to admit it. About a week later, I was in area close to the bar and trying to get someone to dance with me. Allen walks in and I held out my hadn and said,'Care to Dance?' He took it and we danced...for a long time...the rest is history."
Christine said, "How romantic!"
But I couldn't let the illusion continue. "But we did break up for a long time. For many reasons. Right before Christmas, he walked into the studio. The moment I saw him, I realized we still had the old chemistry. He called in Jan and asked me over for dinner. Since then, I've been coming on the weekends ever since. We found each other again."
She smiled. "He's happy. All he does is talk about his 'Sherrie.'"
That made me happy. We ate soon after and then I cleaned up while she talked to me. We made jokes about men and love. After I finished the dishes, we joined the guys and watched Pirates of the Carribean. Al was telling a story from his youth and he said something but I can't remember what, which caused me and Christine to give the 'exchange of looks.' Al caught us. He said, "Ah...ha! Did you see that Dennis? Sherrie and Christine just exchanged the 'look.' You know...that universal eye contact that women know from all over. They've just met and yet they pass the 'look.'"
She and I laughed. Because we had. Dennis said, "They were plotting in the kitchen earlier."
We laughed some more. And they left around 11 or so. Al and I finished tidying the den and he disappeared soon after. I sat watching some TV, thinking he would come back but he didn't. I turned out the lights, blew out the candles we had lit and turned off the TV. It was quiet in the back of the house. I walked softly, thinking he was already asleep.
In the bedroom, there was only a candle burning. The bedcovers weren't turned down...and there was no Al. I stood, trying to figure out where he could be. Then...out the corner of my eye, I saw a naked man, crounching in the closet. He jumped out...and I screamed. It was Allen. Waiting to scare me to death. I fell over laughing at him, saying stuff like "So you've finally surrendered to your paranoia...by huddling naked and afraid in the closet. Or is this YOU coming out of the closet at last? Brokeback Al..." That's when he began to tickle me.
After a long bout of kissing and other things, I broke free and put on my night gown. It was a long deep pink Grecian type gown with a matching robe. I left the robe on the bed and ran to the bathroom to brush my teeth and wash the makeup off. When I came back, there was Al...in the middle of the bed, wearing the robe and doing 'Vogue' poses. I fell over laughing.
This is the way we are together. We have our moments of disagreement and we work through them. He's stubborn and so am I. He makes his point. I make mine and we find some ground in between to work through it. We aren't perfect and never will be, nor is our relationship perfect but at times... I feel it's close to being perfect.
My heart sings and I am thankful for God allowing us to be together again.