3.3.12

It can't be that bad, if days like this are possible.

Days on which you can drive with a boy to the beach, and spend a few hours soaking up the glorious California sunshine. You can sit with him on sandy towels, talking about your vastly different backgrounds, lifestyles, experiences. You can be surprised to find yourself attracted to and intrigued by someone so unlike you, in so many ways. You can be surprised by life, which is the thing that makes you love it most.

You can discover similarities, too. Commonalities in values, in aspirations, in music and humor. You can notice his beguiling way of swallowing his smile when you tease him, as if he doesn't want to give up the points.

You can share nearly frozen grapes from the cooler he's packed, and listen to a playlist which sounds suspiciously tailored to what he knows of your taste in music. You can both enjoy the companionable silence, letting all of this wash over you without any thought to what's next, while you watch climbers scale treacherous cliffs, or children dig holes in the sand.



When an evil-looking bug inches near his towel, you can warn him of the impending invasion, and watch as he gently scoops the insect up to examine it briefly before setting it down a few feet away. You can be touched by his humility, his spirit, and the affection with which he talks about his loved ones.

You can marvel at the peaceful beauty of the water, then grab for your camera when the beach erupts into oohs and ahhs, because a whale has breached close to shore. You catch watch captivated along with the others, as it makes its way through the water, rising ever so often for air. You can see the occasional plume, and imagine the massive, mottled bulk of its body underneath.



You can reluctantly agree to leave and break the spell of a lazy Saturday. But first, you can watch the boy walk alone to the water, just to get his feet wet in the ocean, because it's the beach, and he has to. You can snap a photo of him in the fading light, as he stands silhouetted against the horizon.

You can drive further down the coast, parking when you find a cluster of restaurants and bars that look promising. You can walk picturesque streets bustling with shoppers and diners, joking and talking, and standing close to one another as you wait for stoplights to change. You can be charmed when he guides you to the inside of the sidewalk, lightly holding your waist as he does so.

In the slightly dank air of an Irish pub, you can let wine loosen your tongue, and talk frankly about expectations (none), limitations (many), and expiration dates (certain). You can watch as, despite a mutually-acknowledged impasse, he impulsively grabs the back of your hand to kiss it.

You and a dimpled, considerate, and handsome boy can agree to see what happens, just for the fun of it. Just because you can. It can never be that bad, if things like this are possible.