Friday, May 13, 2011

Love Story Part 7

The next morning we all headed back to town. I was given a sweet smile before Mongoose and I departed and when I reached home I ran upstairs to my bedroom and flopped down on the bed. I could hear my younger siblings running around with friends in and out of the house. I had a little brother, Mike and two younger sisters, Caroline and Margaret. Margaret had just turned two and was practically attached to my mother’s hip. I was the oldest girl but still had two older brothers, J.P. and Robert who were living in Seattle attending the University of Washington. I didn’t miss them much because once they left, so did all of the teasing. I was always a very reclusive child when it came to time at home, probably due to all of the taunting that came when I appeared. I liked my space and relished in the few moments that I had to take in what had happened the night before.

I jolted up and realized I desperately needed to check my myspace and email. I had my own computer in my room and I was addicted to the new social networking capabilities the internet provided. Of course, I had to scour Mongoose’s myspace page once more. He didn’t seem to use it much but there were a couple of posts from his girlfriend Carissa before camp had started. I analyzed each and every word looking for anything that might calm my fears of what was actually going on.

He had a girlfriend.

He just kissed me last night.

I was the “other woman.”

Guilt surrounded me and I felt awful. I redirected my thoughts and decided to properly shower and head out to the supermarket to pick up a few things. Trying to get clean at camp was a joke. You would get wet and then walk out into the dust bowl and be completely dirty immediately. You never really got clean until you came back into town. Once I was done, I drove to the store. I need to pick up a journal and some toiletries for the coming week. I am someone who loves to wander around a store to just check things out so I soon found myself near the jewelry seeing if there was anything I would possibly wear. I was staring at some rings when I heard a familiar voice,
“Hey Gidget!”

It was Mongoose. Correction. It was Mongoose and Carissa.

My cheeks flushed as he smiled as if everything was completely normal. Because it is completely normal to kiss one girl and the next day see her and hold the hand of your actual girlfriend.

“Uhhh, hi. What are you two up to?” I responded.

“Oh, I needed some flip flops for camp and I stink at shopping so I brought Carissa to help me out.” He waved a pair of flip flops in his spare hand in my direction.

I stared down those flip flops like no one’s business, mainly because making eye contact felt like I wasn’t wearing any pants. It was awful. Embarrassing. Extremely guilt-inducing. The worst part was that as we continued to make small talk about the weather, my new journal, and the next week of camp Carissa would smile so sweetly at me.

It would be easier if she was snobby, bratty, or rude, anything besides being a complete angel. I wanted to find some sort of fault, some sort of reason why I was better for Mongoose than her. I had nothing. Thankfully the agony of that meet up was over and we decided that we might see each other at the fair grounds for the Fourth of July which would be that Monday and which we thankfully had off.

I was shaking walking away. Luckily I was meeting up with some friends later and I knew I would have fun with them. Lena and Elana were really fun to be around and I felt like I hadn’t seen then in a long time. They knew that once camp really started that I would be nonexistent and Lena decided she wanted to go out to dinner before I vanished until school started. Being teenage girls we decided to “dress up.” At that time the store American Eagle was all the rage and so I sorted through my non camp clothes and found the perfect outfit. A denim mini skirt and two tank tops layered; one white and the top one maroon and lacy. I even accessorized with a long silver necklace and silver dangly earrings. I threw on my flip flops and headed over to Elana’s house where we would decide where to go to dinner.

When I got there we finished getting ready by applying eyeliner and lip gloss and finalizing outfit choices.

“So where should we go?” Lena asked.

“Ooo, what about Red Robin? They have something for everyone there,” Elana suggested.

“No, I feel like I go to Red Robin all the time. What about Zesta Cucina?” I mused. I felt like if we were going to dress up we should go somewhere a little more exciting than Red Robin. Zesta Cucina was a local Italian restaurant where you could draw on the tables and eat yummy buttery noodles.

“Oh come on Gina, Red Robin is so good,” They both pleaded. We discussed it a little further but finally I was outnumbered and we were going to Red Robin. Of course I had told them all about the current Mongoose fiasco. I told them about his girlfriend and about how he seemed to like me and how I didn’t know what to do anymore.

“This sounds like a tough situation Gina,” Lena consoled. She was always so sweet and endearing about everything. She was gorgeous as well. Lond dark hair and perfectly tall, she had the sweetest smile, I was so glad she was my friend. We discussed Mongoose in depth on our way to the restaurant, describing what he looked like and all the little things he did. I could tell they liked him already, except for the whole Carissa part.

We pulled into a spot in the parking lot and as we were locking the doors to the car a little red Kia quickly stopped and we heard,

“I can’t believe this!!!”

The words were directed towards us and we were all a little shocked as to who could be yelling at us, I looked up and to my surprise saw Mongoose.

“Uh…wow. This is crazy. Did you just eat? Oh, uh, this is Mongoose,” I threw my words together and gave Lena and Elana the look. It said, This is him. This is Mongoose .I am going to die.

“Actually we were just about to go eat, I was just looking for a spot to park,” He responded.

I couldn’t believe this. It was too weird. Of course it wasn’t just him in the car. Carissa was sitting next to him and there were three unknown people in the backseat.

“Do you want to eat together?” Mongoose asked.

What? Was he serious? He seemed serious? He seemed completely calm about everything and it freaked me out a bit. Of course I wanted to eat with him but this was too weird. I looked to my friends for thoughts on the matter. They smiled and said they would love to. Well that sealed that deal and as he parked we walked into the restaurant.

Lena and Elana gave me glances and we whispered about the whole situation.

“He is definitely cute,” They both decided.

To make things even more interesting once we got inside I realized my entire family was also eating at Red Robin. Thankfully they were already seated and my mom knew not to impose upon my night with my friends. It was still awkward though.

There would be eight of us eating together which was an awkward number, the restaurant was busy but when we finally got a table they placed us in a booth with one chair at the head. We naturally found our spots. I took the single chair and Carissa scooted to the back of one side of the booth with Mongoose following her. Lena and Elana slid in next to Mongoose and the three others took the other side of the booth. They were Carissa’s cousin and her cousin’s boyfriend and the boyfriend’s younger brother.

Surprisingly it didn’t feel that awkward. Mongoose questioned Lena and Elana to learn more about me and we all swapped stories; mainly though, dinner felt like it included only Mongoose, Lena, Elana, and myself. We ordered food and started eating as soon as it arrived. I got my favorite teriyaki burger that had a pineapple inside. I loved it. I was never one of those “girly” eaters. I like food and I like to eat. I don’t order salad to show how delicate I am. Mongoose commented,

“Wow, you can really eat can’t you?!” He seemed surprised by my diving into my hamburger. I just smiled and chewed away.

I glanced towards Carissa who seemed completely ignored at this point. Mongoose was excitedly telling stories and entertaining my friends with his back turned to his girlfriend. She was definitely noticing. At one point he was talking about the adventures of his high school buddies and I saw Carissa put her hand on his and they intertwined fingers for a moment before Mongoose found a way to release the hold in order to emphasis and play out a part of his story. The look on her face was crushing. It might have been what I internalized but I felt awful for her. I would have been crushed if my boyfriend found a way out of holding my hand. But she smiled on and resumed talking to her cousin across the table, seemingly part of a different universe.

It felt like Mongoose’s attention was focused on me and I was fine with that. I thrived on attention and relished in the fact that it felt like he really was choosing me.

There was a moment when we locked eyes and I swear that we were the only two people in that restaurant. It was very West Side Story when Maria and Tony are at the dance hall and everyone else just blurs into oblivion. We were having our own little dinner that night. We feasted on smiles, winks, and giggles.

We ran into each other twice in one day, beyond our own doing. It wasn’t planned and it felt like more than coincidence. Something or what I would realize later, someone was pulling us together.

The drive home from the restaurant with my friends was filled with a lot of “oh my goodness!!” and “I can’t believe….” By far the funniest moment driving home was when I reminded them how weird it all was especially since I had kissed him the night before. Both Lena and Elana started screaming and Lena had to pull to the side of the rode because there was way too much chaos in that moment to be driving.

“YOU WHAT!?!” They screamed in excitement.

“I already told you we kissed,” I confusedly exclaimed. Our voices were raised very high because we were teenage girls who had just spent dinner with a very charming man and our hormones were definitely off balance.

“No. You forgot to leave that detail out,” They both cried. The pleaded for me to tell in detail what exactly had happened the night before and then we sat on the side of the road and analyzed what it all meant.

“Oh…Gina. This is tricky,” Lena thought out loud, “but he is so nice and funny.”

It was finally decided to just see how things went from there. I would be seeing him on Monday at the Fair Grounds for the 4th and I would just have to wait until then to know what was going to happen next.

Click here for Part 8

1 comment:

  1. well hello! we miss you over here! how's the baby coming along?! post pictures on facebook or something!!!! :)