New York feels smaller…and a bit less magical now. He moved. Without saying goodbye. My first New York love just up and left.
We have a connection that’s laced with synchronicity… as if we’ve been following each other through life just waiting for our paths to finally crossover. We both hail from Texas, moved to Boston and then relocated to NYC. We met when we lived just half of a block from each other in Nolita, a tiny neighborhood nestled next to Soho. We discovered we’d actually been to the same concert in Boston the year before we met and we sat just five rows apart. And when he contacted me to tell me he moved, we learned he’s now living in a neighborhood I used to live in down south AND we’d actually been on vacation in Tulum at the same time last month. Those parallel paths have a curious way of making me feel linked to him in some way that’s bigger than the two of us.
I still remember our first date in vivid detail. It was a Monday – 9PM at a cocktail bar down the street from our apartments. I’d just moved to NYC and I thought everyone did Monday night dates at 9PM. I even remember what I was wearing: black turtleneck sweater, tan skinny chords and black strappy heels. He was wearing his usual: dark suit, no tie. When I saw his mischievous grin I distinctly remember thinking “I’m either gonna love him or hate him.” Over time, it turned out to be both.
He’s the only guy I’ve ever dated that has had such a lasting impact. I can recall whole chunks of dialog word for word as if they happened yesterday. I remember every place we dined, every glass of “big angry red” we shared, the way he held my hand, the compliments we exchanged and ultimately… the hurt feelings. Ah, if he’d only had an open heart and been ready for real love.
I don’t know if it’s possible to be in deep love with someone you only dated casually for about six months, but I do think it’s possible to love the parts of a person that are presented to you. For sure, I have a deep fondness for him. I felt more like myself around him than anyone I’ve dated before or after. And now he’s not in New York City anymore. The chance meetings I’d secretly hoped for? Gone. The idea of rekindling the old flame? Ridiculous. I can only liken the feeling to mild grief – it’s sad when we have to lay our secret fantasies to rest and come to terms with what’s at hand.
He will always have a special place in my heart…for he is the only one who has been able to pry it open with such effortless finesse.
So long, Tex.
Musical pairing to enhance your listening pleasure: