It was a gorgeous summer day at the pool. He had curly blonde hair, a decent body, and was a year old than me. He lived in my grandfather’s condominium complex, and swam like a competitor.
We played Marco Polo that day, challenged each other in holding our breaths underwater, and in who could swim the farthest. I remember emerging as the champion, and the feel of his chlorine slicked body embracing mine before our parents made us take a break.
My grandfather, of course, thought it was the funniest thing and made sure to get the boy’s phone number before I left. I must have turned fifty shades of red because he laughed as he handed it to me. I smiled all the way home, and then my mom refused to let me call him because it was after 8:00 pm when we finally got home.
Our champion swim marathon turned into champion telephone marathons. I wore a path on the dining room carpet pacing as I talked to him, bound by the cord of the telephone. My mom hovered nearby, finding something else in the kitchen that needed cleaning, staying conveniently within hearing range. I would spin, twist, and wind the cord around myself, my mouth never ceasing movement.
After a week of conversation, I begged and I pleaded to have my now-boyfriend over to visit. His mom had agreed to bring him down, so it was up to me to get my parents to approve. My mom finally caved and agreed to let him come.
I was awake with the sun that morning, an unusual feat for me. I liked my sleep but this day was an exception. I was having a real live boy over! Oh how time moved so slow that morning! Up and down I went, continuing even after my mom told me to sit still. I just couldn’t!
Finally, the doorbell rings. He’s here! I opened the door, and there he stood. His curls hugged his head tighter than I remembered, endless freckles I hadn’t noticed before decorated his face. He smiled crookedly, the gaps from growing teeth drawing my attention. His arms spread wide in greeting, embracing me, before he waved his mom away.
“Hi,” he said, his hot and foul breath hitting me like a pile of dirt released from the back of a dump truck.
I took him to the living room and went in search of my mom. She took one look at my wide-eyed, horrified expression and laughed.
“Boys sure look different when you have your glasses on, don’t they?” she said.
The editors at Write on Edge gave us 450 words to tell a story about a face to face meeting that didn’t go exactly as planned. This story comes from my real life archives. I was 11 that summer and well…I hope you enjoyed this little memoir.
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