I go out not because I want to but because of it Yes10 degree, I feel like I have to. Lying on Telegraph Hill with sunscreen on and seeing the sun through the lenses of cheap sunglasses, I cringe, thinking it would be so much better if I could bring something to lean on my head. I’ve managed to do something with myself, but I’ve always thought Saturday should be more than that. I should cool off in the lake. From a balcony in Santorini looking out at all the blue roofs.
Behind me, a group of students dipped hummus with celery sticks and talked about how fun it was at the party last night and they all Start dancing on the speakers. A man on a picnic chair lights a match and nods to J Hus, whose speakers burst out of his. It felt like everyone had more fun than me. Life seemed to pass by me again. I haven’t booked a vacation yet. I want to go to more BBQ. When was the last time I ate at a chic place? I was lying on the grass in that park, but neither was I, I was in another place altogether, taking a mental journey of all the places I could and could go.
A few days later, I had sex with that guy again. I didn’t expect it, then I texted him in the bar toilet, grinned when he replied, climbed into the cab back to him, and kissed him at the door like I was hungry. We walked into his living room and purple, green and red disco lights danced over us as we undressed. In that moment, I was so grounded, lost in his inner pressure, my neck pressed against the side of the sofa, the slight damp smell, and my lips tight, almost bruised. I once listened to a somewhat wacky podcast about “flow states” – apparently they happen when a person is doing an activity so immersed in the moment that they forget they’re doing it and time starts to warp and Bend until it doesn’t make sense anymore. I must have been in it then, because I felt like I was in Technicolor with every touch, never thinking about what was going on outside of us and where else I could be. Time also disappeared, so it’s impossible to say how long it lasted. I guess that’s why I’m always confused when people ask how long this guy lasted because it’s hard to tell when it’s good. Forty-five minutes or five?
us Lie there until the way we use our fingers to draw shapes on each other makes us want to start over. Then we did each other something I was too embarrassed to write down. I didn’t think about it at the time, but it strikes me now that desire can be so strong that it allows us to do things we would have thought impossible in any other position. Not only being naked in front of strangers, but doing such an intimate thing naked. Dedicate yourself in this way. Why do I still feel embarrassed walking up to a large group of people I find goodbye so stressful at a party that I just pretend I’m going to the bathroom and run away but I can have sex with very few people without embarrassment ? This time, I didn’t think about what I looked like or what it meant.
Even though we’re over, I’m still in that state, clinging to the present, feeling everything so intently. The folds of the sheets under me. Slight tingling between my legs. The smell of smoke filled the air as I walked towards my taxi. Since then, I’ve seen the world in ways I couldn’t see when I lay in the park. I went home and watched
“I guess that’s what hell feels like,” I said when we got there, wiping the sweat from my brow in the line.
“What?” she asked. “Hangover and having to line up in boots without air conditioning?”
Outside, I was looking for the bus to go home, and when I did , I’m starting to feel weirdly ashamed. “I felt good yesterday, and now I feel guilty,” I told her, not just because of the whole pill thing, but because of it in general.
My friend put her hand on my arm. “Everybody had sex. The queen had sex. The cyclist over there had sex.” She pointed elsewhere. “So is she.”
I laughed and felt the sun shine On my nose, my sandals fit the arches of my feet perfectly, and the smell is roasted peanuts from a stall across the road. Before saying goodbye, I told her I was going to swim with her the next day, and knowing that, life was easy and inevitable again, like when I collapsed with him on his bed. When I traveled through time and space with him, through the stars.
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