Saturday, November 17, 2012
Sipping martinis and facing the street, we sit shoulder to shoulder in Midtown. Through the window, I recognize the restaurant where Jerome cooks. I turn to Laila and nod across the street.
"The French chef."
It's a matter of fact and, with an eyebrow and a smirk, it's also inevitable. She holds my hand as we dash across the intersection.
I've never been here before. Late enough in the night, the lights are dimmed and the atmosphere is pumped with music as patrons filter up to the rooftop. We slide onto bar stools and look around.
"Ladies?" The bartender leans in and smiles.
"Is Jerome on tonight?" Laila is drunk. And gorgeous. She inquires before I have the chance.
"Well, it just so happens..."
"Did not think we would meet again."
His arm is around my shoulders and his lips are at my ear. He is surprised to see me. No doubt my text message yesterday came unexpected.
Just found out that I'm moving.
I got a new job.
We had only been on a few dates. He invited me to visit his home in the countryside near Toulouse when he stayed over once. It never would have worked out.
Tonight, we drink on the house. The mélange of liquor, heartache and this man's seductive accent invites me to act foolishly.