Being inspired, maybe – 43

A picture paints ... well, as many words as you like.  For instance:

And, then, the words:

So here's the thing...

I have a friend who is a girl, Julie, who is not a girlfriend if you know what I mean, that has this thing about Sleepless in Seattle.

On the other hand, I have this other friend, Wally, a mate, if you could call him that, who likes to play practical jokes on his friends.

Who often cease to be his friend because of said practical jokes.

And he played one on me.

So, where do the two fit into the problem, which I guess is not really a problem unless I was interpreting events incorrectly!

Which, sadly I'm prone to doing.

Let me explain.

My so-called friend decided that I was not trying hard enough to get myself 'out there' after I lamented one Friday night over one too many bottles of beer, that life could be better.

The next day he took it upon himself to create a profile for me on a dating site.

On the other side of the country.

So, when I got a message from the dating app that there was a match for my profile, which I knew nothing about, I was alternately angry with Wally and curious at the same time.

A call to him led me the dating site, and the profile he'd set up for me.

And it was surprisingly accurate.

Which then annoyed me because it was an impossible match.  We were at best a four and a half hour flight away, a flight that was relatively expensive.

I sent her a message, apologized for the foolishness of my friend, took down the profile, and thought no more about it.

Until I received a message two weeks later saying from Julie saying she was in Toronto by a quirk of fate and wondered if I was free, adding that if I was not, it would be a problem.

But as everyone knows when someone says it's not a problem, it could become one, so I sent a message back, where and when.

Union Station, near the clock, towards the Canadian flag which was hanging from the wall.  A girl in a yellow hat.

My first thought, who wears hats these days?

That first meeting turned into a first date, then a second, and then for a few months after that when she had business in Toronto.  On one of the dates we decided at every year, come what may, we would meet where we first met, Toronto Union Station, near the clock, and if there was a Canadian flag, under it.

Then, about six months after it started, I heard no more from her.  I sent a text but it was rejected, her phone had been disconnected.  I figured she had decided a long-range relationship wasn't going to work, and since I had no idea where she lived, or what she did, it was not meant to last.  After all, she never asked me to come to San Francisco.

Nevertheless, I was disappointed.  

But oddly enough I remembered the agreement we made about meeting at Union Station on the anniversary of our first date.  I don't know why it stuck because I had put her out of my mind, not that I'd found a replacement

I just found myself gravitating towards the station.  Was it just on the off chance she would be there?  And was it that whatever feelings I had towards her, they had not diminished?  What would I say if she did turn up?

I came from the Scotiabank Arena, and it was a long foyer.  Sometimes I walked that way, and on to the CN tower and back, just in case I might see her again. 

Today I bought the New York Times for the crossword, found a seat near the flag,  and decided I would wait until the crossword was done, and then I would leave.

That's how I missed her arrival, even sitting next to me on the seat.

Until she said, "You came."

And I looked sideways to see her, yellow hat, and smile.  

"I thought you had disappeared."

"I had to.  For a while.  But I'm back, and, here for good.  What you see is all I have, and what I see is all I want.  In a way, you saved my life."

"Then let me buy you lunch and you can tell me all about it."

© Charles Heath 2019


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