Lake Merrit Farmers Market: Listening to Kaleo

I found her walking across the intersection, early afternoon, coils of long brown hair behind her thin figure; the tips of which were dyed blonde.  The blonde tips were new but as soon as I saw her, I knew I remembered her.  From my car window I called out her name.  Her expression bursts in the joy of being in an unlikely collision.  I don’t think she noticed me with the beard, the same way she had turned the edges of her hair blonde.  She walked across and around my car to where I opened the passenger window.  With a smile she said hello and told me she was heading to the Farmer’s Market.  I said we should catch up, not later, but right now.  And, somewhat reluctantly, she got in the car.

In rapid fire, like maybe I knew too much about the moment and knew that it was rapidly vanishing, I told her everything in snippets: how I graduated from college, travel, write, and speak more languages than I could demonstrate to her as quickly as I could.  She told me some personal things about her life right now, much of which she was working through.  And to be honest, it seemed like her thoughts and her being would rather be somewhere else at that moment.

Her and I, we were together a long time ago.  It was a very long time ago.  I don’t know whether or not it hurts more to remember the bad times because they were bad or the good times because they’re not there anymore.   Either way there would be no way to go backward.  Life was different then.  We weren’t so obsessed with work and becoming adults.  But a lot happens after, what, seven years.  People grow up, they change.  But, memories are forever.

Like a moment cut prematurely, we got stuck in traffic and told me that she would have to get going.  We hugged.  Her hair still felt the same way that it did when we were together.  Once she left, I knew that I wouldn’t have tried harder to get her to stay, but moreso should’ve tried harder to let her go.  We played a large part in each others lives.  Where our lives would go now seems ambiguous, but looking back at my time with her, it was actually very pleasant.

I drove off only to stop several feet away in traffic.  No matter how close I still was to her, I was sure that she was gone.  Maybe I’ll see her again in a few years.  It seems like we’ve been doing that.  I keep hoping that maybe I’ll be a better person by then.  I keep hoping that maybe she might see that.  Maybe she sees that I already am.

I looked back down at the track that I was listening to through the bluetooth of my car.  It was titled, “I Can’t Go On Without You,” by Kaleo.

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