I met him on June 8, 1998. It was a Tuesday. I was wearing a black dress with a racer back. He was wearing black trousers, a white shirt and a blue necktie. On any other man, that uniform he might have ensured anonymity, but he was an extraordinary man, and he somehow not only distinguished himself but made his clothes seem like bleeding-edge fashion.
We were at a local energy concern. I was a young, brash, silly girl. He did not seem to see the silliness. After the meeting, we got on the elevator and traveled down seven floors. We talked, but I don’t remember about what. When the doors opened, he walked off.
It would have been fine if I had never seen him again. He was beautiful but there are many beautiful people in the world. I had my whole life ahead of me. There was plenty of time for men.
A week later, I was late for a meeting. My car was obnoxiously fast and I was using it to my advantage, bursting down the downtown streets in blazing streaks of red paint and roaring turbo. The top was down. Music was blaring. The light turned red. I slowed to turn right, and two men stepped off the curb. I screeched the tires. In the shocked air, I heard Madonna screaming over traffic: “I made it through the wilderness… somehow I made it through…. “
The men crossed. I zipped through and parked and ran into the meeting. Ten other people there. Five minutes later, he walked in. For the first time, I made the connection. I’d nearly killed him out there. Panic spread through my body.
He didn’t even raise an eyebrow. He sat down and we had our meeting. When we took a break, I was too scared to move. I sat very still, hoping he didn’t recognize me, though the top was down, though he saw me, of course he saw me, I was three feet away, I was bearing down on him with a bright red German car, he knew it was me and I could not hide. We were alone. He looked up and with a teasing smile said, “Nice car.”
I smiled. I couldn’t help but smile. “I’m sorry…”
He shook off my apologies. By then, people were returning, and finally I relaxed and we got some work done.
We did not keep in touch. There was no reason to. But occasionally I would hear his name and it always made me feel good, knowing he was in the world.
When he began to comment on my blog, I was amused at the cycles of life, how people come and go and find each other again. He sent an email: Do you still have that car? If not, I’d like to see you.
I wrote back: Car sold. Meet me at the bar at the Four Seasons at 8pm.
The rest is not history. The history is documented and put away. The rest is present.