by Jeannie Yee Davis
Sometimes it feels like all I have to do is reach out, grab hold, and the universe is mine. Once I do reach out, reality sets in. All I see is disappointment. Disappointment that dreams don’t come true. It never did. Why haven’t I learned that yet? I’m an insane optimist, that’s why. I keep thinking, hoping this time would be different—this time, it would work out. Maybe when I put myself out there again, I wouldn’t get rejected. Is that asking too much?
How many times have I put myself out on a limb with “Wanna grab a coffee?” only to get a “No, thanks” back? I know it’s not typical for a girl to ask a guy out, but I’m not typical. Who created those dumb rules anyway? At this rate, I’d be a spinster before I find Mr. Right.
I may not be model material, but I’ve been told I’m not hard on the eyes. I work out three times a week and stay off processed foods usually. I can’t imagine my 5’4″ frame would intimidate a guy. My girlfriends include me in all their activities, which cancels out my having no personality. What’s the problem then?
Wouldn’t everybody appreciate being asked out? Especially a guy. After all, growing up, boys were usually too shy to ask a girl out. You’d think they would feel relieved to skip that awkward step. I never cared what people thought. I am goal-oriented and impatient. Let’s just say waiting for things to happen wasn’t my strength. Although I’m learning maybe I should wait for destiny instead of taking matters into my own hands. Taking control hasn’t worked for me yet. Why does it have to be complicated? The guys I wouldn’t mind dating are the ones who say no. The guys I don’t care for are eager to ask me out.
“I swear, I’ll never fall in love again,” I thought as I took a sip of my coffee. “Ow!” I yelped in response to the shove in my arm that caused the domino effect splashing coffee on my chin.
“I’m so sorry! Are you okay?” a silky voice asked.
I cringed from the sting on my chin as I fished for a napkin in my purse and thought, “Watch where you’re going!” but his soothing voice changed my tone, and I heard me say, “I’m fine,” while I dabbed my chin with a tissue.
“I’m really sorry,” he said. I glanced up at my tall assailant, gasped when I recognized his face from the high school yearbook photo I taped inside my diary. “Can I buy you another coffee or take you to lunch to make it up to you?”
“Sure, I mean, you don’t have to do that, but I’d like that.”
“Which? Buy you coffee or buy you lunch?”
“Yes,” I said, self-conscious he would see my heated cheeks, not from the coffee, when reality hit me that the guy I had a crush on through school was standing next to me, talking to me and inviting me to coffee or lunch. “Either works. Whichever is convenient for you,” I breathed, calming my nerves. His furrowed brows didn’t help. “Or neither. I’m fine, really.” His brows knitted tighter as I chewed on my lip.
“Not a problem,” he said. “Sorry, I’m staring, but you seem familiar. Have we met?” he moved to avoid the passerby running into him. He placed his hand under my arm and led us to the side of the walkway, avoiding pedestrians.
“We went to the same junior high,” I said. “I’m Andrea,” I added, keeping my eyes on him, which was easy. I’ve had a lot of practice staring at this handsome face and thick wavy black hair, which is as gorgeous as ever.
“Andrea?” he said, shaking his head.
“Oh, wait, I went by Andi in school. I’m not surprised you don’t recognize me. You didn’t notice me back then. We lived on the same block. We were in the same school for one year. You were in ninth grade. I was in seventh.”
He nodded, acknowledging what I said, “I never met you and never got your name, but believe me, I remember you. If I never noticed you, why would you look familiar to me?”
My face heated up as a smile spread across his face, just as gorgeous as his photo, and I smiled, hoping that would distract him from my obviously reddening cheeks.
“Hi, Andi, I’m Eddie. It’s nice to meet you finally.” He extended his hand to me, and we shook hands. “Way overdue, but I’d like to make up the lost time. You hungry? Let’s do lunch.”
Right then, I realized why my efforts failed. Destiny knew my Mr. Right was on his way.