I had been wondering why i’m still friends with Joe, seeing the posts about him hanging out with all these ‘wood people and thinking about how it’s not fair of me to just ignore the parts of him i don’t like, wondering if i like Terry better because i just take him for what he is rather than having an idealized image which requires ignoring large portions of his reality. There was going to be a lengthy entry about lots of the issues i thought lots about over the break, and perhaps there still will be. Eventually.
Then that night i was up late and Joe IMed me. The fact that i had a busy day coming up made the planning a bit more difficult, but he totally of his own accord initiated wanting to get together.
I don't feel as if our visit was a very good oneI definitely didn’t think it was a good visit either, but i wasn’t sure how much of that was me. I totally admit to it having soured my feelings about him.
I was not doing well that day
J: Julie works later on, but I'm scared to drive to NoHo by myself
E: *makes sad face*
J: I can try, though
E: I would heart you 4eva.
Thursday phone call during lunch we had a plan: he and Julie were coming to Northampton to hang out, and then she was leaving for work, and i was to call him after i got back from pool class. I did so. He was in a coffee shop, reading. I was to learn that he had been doing so for the 2 hours since Julie had left him. She apparently didn’t actually tell him where he was. There is really only 1 coffee shop in Northampton, though, and he said it was right near Faces (they had been there right before Julie left) and looking across the street he saw Tofu, which after a moment i remembered was that new restaurant near the Good Thyme Deli. Yes, he was in Haymarket. I asked if i should come get him or if i should just give him directions to my house. Pause. “Best you come get me.”
Chase wasn’t serving dinner for another 10 minutes, but i swung by to see the menu because there was no point in trekking back if we were just gonna go back downtown to eat anyway. (My mother winces sometimes that she is sending me out into the real world with no life skills, but i am her daughter, so i am good at planning.) Dinner sounded pretty eh, so we decided to actually pay for food.
We went to the Thorne’s parking garage (where he was parked) so he could feed in more money. I lent him my gloves, because clearly i wasn’t using them, and clearly he was shaking. Then we wandered around Thorne’s deciding where to eat. We did not go to Paul and Elizabeth’s. We ultimately decided upon Fresh Pasta Bistro. I had the same thing i had the last two times -- sweet potato ravioli with romesco -- which i felt bad about, because their food is so good that i feel like i should try different stuff, but they didn’t have the special pastas and sauce of the day like they usually do, so my options were ravioli or i think fetuccini
I was telling Joe about how when people take me out to eat i always make me take them there, and he said something like if he had money he would take me out. Aw, such a sweetie. I charged a meal for the first time tonight; i’m such a big girl :)
I heard more about how much of a hellish semester it truly was and understood far better why he wasn’t exactly ‘up with people’ that first week of vacation.
Joe was impressed by my house. Walking the hall he said it’s like a hotel. And then he saw the bathrooms and was mightily impressed. “You have cubbies? No one steals stuff?” And then he didn’t think my room was over-small as most people do. This pleased me greatly. He says my dial tone is too high-pitched. I think it sounds the same as my home phone, but whatever.
He played with my juggling balls some. Sadly i’m not good enough yet to really be able to show off.
I gave him some of the candy my mom gave me, and of course he was pleased. UNH, too, has the fake 7-layer-bars, but he agreed that my mom’s were far superior.
He didn’t make me listen to Wing, but he played around with Google and swears he is changing the language preferences on his computer to Elmer Fudd, and i believe him.
Over the course of the evening we talked about our just-finished semesters, school, doing things with one’s life, the plethora of death and illness which has been this past year, and lots of other stuff. It was really comfortable and made me so happy. Just good conversation, enjoying each other’s company, relaxed, not forced. I thought, “This is why i love this boy.”
He and Julie took separate vehicles to Northampton, him following her, so he didn’t actually know exactly how to get back to her house. Clearly she doesn’t have my mother. So i MapQuest-ed and walked him back to Thorne’s parking garage (where he was parked) around 9 (when his meter ran out -- because clearly, he was going to be towed at 8:52 since his meter went until 8:51). I didn’t even know Thorne’s had a parking garage until tonight, so i got in the car and we drove until he knew where he was (which was actually before i knew where we were). We kept going and yes, he definitely knew where we were, so he turned around and took me back closer to where i wanted to be and dropped me off (the regular behind Thorne’s, so i just walked up Armory Street, then crossed Main at that big intersection and went up King to come home).
On our way he complimented my hair, said he had noticed during dinner but we were talking and he didn’t want to interrupt. I said he said something like “You can always stop someone to tell her she’s pretty.” “So I can stop a woman in the street and tell her that?” I had meant that he could always interrupt conversation to say that, but certainly he could stop strangers. They would probably think he was crazy, but they wouldn’t get violent; it’s a compliment after all. We agreed that children, particularly girls, hear “You’re so pretty/cute” far too much, and adults don’t hear it nearly enough. We were talking, and i loved that the conversation totally assumed that it was my permission he needed for these things, like i ran the universe, but anyway, he said that he had been taught that that was like the sketchiest thing a guy could do, to tell a random stranger how beautiful she was, and i agreed that she would probably be creeped out, but it’s one of those instances where after you’re creeped out you feel flattered and kinda bask in it.
One of the topics that came up in conversation was out-of-print books, and i mentioned The Blue Faience Hippopotamus (a beautiful sad wonderful children’s book which is tragically out of print), and i pulled it up on Amazon, and there are 4 copies (Half.com also has it -- probably the same people, cross-listing their stock.). I could have sworn last time my mom looked for it online there was only 1 copy. I am so tempted to buy myself a copy.
So yeah. Really really good night. So much better than last time, which could of course be damning with faint praise (Joe called last time “tragic”) but seriously, a quality quality night on its own, and had the added bonus of counteracting the bad night and making me feel a whole lot better about a relationship that’s really important to me.
In other happy news...
Had wonderful chats with Jay at various points during class. We need to hang out sometime that isn’t class.
sigrun isn’t dead. (Neither is sk8eeyore, but i felt certain her flight would not crash, while sigrun was due back on LJ oh, 4 months ago.)
I am now on the UMassAmherst Fine Arts Center mailing list (though i’m underwhelmed by the Spring 2004 offerings).
Oh, and i forgot to mention that my mommy fixed my lovely Ten Thousand Villages bag, so it will soon be in the mail headed my way, ready for use this upcoming semester.
I feel so much better than i did the first couple days back. That was the closest i would ever like to come to depression, thanks very much. Depression isn’t the right word for that, though. More of just an overwhelmed feeling. I spent the first week of vacation just thinking, because i had little else to do, and if it weren’t for the Marian-Sean visit i would have spent most of the second week doing the same. The first couple days back at Smith were back to living in my head, which apparently can be dangerous in large doses, especially when feeling overwhelmed by to-do lists, and angsty as a result of some of that thinking. Interacting with people, and having good things happen... does wonders for pulling one back into normal functioning mode.