She scowls at me. She doesn’t like the fact that I don’t approve of this chap. But I’m just being honest. I mean, just look at him. What did she see in him anyway? I can’t see them together, not for a minute. But of course, she won’t take my advice now. She’ll date him for a while and then realize I was right all along. And guess who lends her a shoulder to cry on? Anyway, I guess she will learn from her experiences. Eventually.
When I met her, she was just recovering from a heartbreak. Vulnerable but guarded. I remember how her smile had faded within seconds of spotting me. It was as though, she had recognized me, but wanted to be left alone.
I had hesitated, not knowing what to do. Normally, I would have walked up to her and said a hello but not with this girl. She had disappeared behind a shelf, as though she was trying to hide from me. I would have walked away then, had she not tried to peep around the corner to see if I was still there. I’d caught her eye and raised an eyebrow. Incredibly childish, I had thought. I was about to turn around and walk out when I noticed a hint of that smile in her eyes. The smile gave way to laughter and she walked over to me.
I’m so sorry, I don’t know what came over me! She had said. She had noticed the book in my hand and said, You know I can’t take that, right?
Of course, I didn’t take no for an answer. I explained to her how mesmerized I’d been watching emotions fleet across her face. To her credit, she didn’t seem to mind. She didn’t think I was trying to hit on her. She took the book from me and thanked me politely.
Immediately, awkwardness descended upon us. Now that the exchange was done, I didn’t know what to do. I didn’t want to put her off by asking her too many things or randomly trying to make conversation but I also didn’t want this to be those one-off encounters when you meet someone amazing and let them walk away. I had to meet her again.
As I tried to gather courage to ask her for a coffee without making it sound like a date, she decided to leave. Crestfallen, I bid her a goodbye and watched her walk towards the exit.
At the door, she hesitated, glanced down at the book in her hand and turned around.
I don’t know your name yet. She had asked, looking pointedly at her feet.
I had walked over and introduced myself, still wondering how I could make her stay.
Suddenly, without warning, she’d looked straight into my eyes and asked I have some time to kill and I was thinking of getting some coffee. Want to come with?
I know what you are thinking, that coffee led to dinner, but it didn’t. It was just good old coffee. Actually, it was hot chocolate. She isn’t a coffee person.
Honestly speaking, I had never had so much fun talking to a girl before. She was different. More like a pal. No, I don’t mean we spoke about bikes, cars or football. She didn’t care much about those. Actually, I don’t know what we spoke about. Now that I think about it, we don’t share common interests. She falls in a bracket of people I call “nerds”. But yet, every time we meet, we always have something to discuss. We meet, we laugh and we have a good time. We don’t venture into the emotional pool many times, only when it’s unavoidable. Like the time she broke down because her pet fish diet or the time I was bummed out because my friend completely trashed my car.
Not that I haven’t asked her for advice about women but she isn’t like any woman I’d want to date. Like I said, she’s a pal.