It’s weird how memories of the past are so easily forgotten. Until a smell, a song, a color, summons it back fresh to your mind. For me it’s always been the smell of rain. That freshly, wet pavement, earthly smell. I might be exaggerating, but in my head, my memory ties key moments of my life to the rain. I used to stand outside with my face up, and arms outstretched to the sky. Begging the gods to bring their worst, to rain on me like never before. I was just a kid then… Though years later as an angsty teen, I did the same. Nobody ever stopped me or questioned why I was so strange to do so. I think I just wanted to feel something colder than what I felt inside of me on the outside. I wanted to be one with the rain.
It seemed like a simple moment, the breakup. The rain was silently drizzling over the parking lot, it was dark. Per our usual routine, we’d hardly spend time in the day. I could still feel the warmth from my passenger seat when he left. I watched him walk away from me from the review mirror in my car. Before he reached his apartment doors he turned around for a last look. To this day I still wonder why. It was his doing to end things in the first place. So why look back at all? Why continue years later to block me on social media? Forever a mystery I suppose.
I knew it wasn’t an ordinary night, and I knew exactly what was going to happen. I thought maybe it’ll happen like it does in all the movies. A dessert with a diamond ring sparkling from the top. Then he’d get down on a knee in front of the tables of strangers and I’d… cry? I didn’t know what emotion I’d feel to be honest. It wasn’t like I wasn’t happy about it. Just felt rushed. A three-hundred-dollar meal, and barely satisfied stomach later we were walking outside the restaurant hand in hand. Seriously, what is up with rich people and small portions of food? By those standards I’d go into debt trying to get full! To this day it still infuriates me that he picked a snobby restaurant instead of a burger joint with crunchy fries.
It started raining while we reached our car. Maybe he did all this just to confuse me? I convinced myself that it wasn’t going to happen as we drove. And I was a bit relieved. He parked the car at our old neighborhood when we were kids. We had lived on the same block and just two streets away. I was elated to see how the place has changed since. He apologized for the weather, that he didn’t expect it to rain so much. Then he asked if I’d mind a walk despite so. I agreed, what’s a little rain? Except, it rained so much it had drowned everyone’s lawns and the sidewalks were beyond covered with worms. And I’m not talking the cute little pink ones. These were full on HUGE nightcrawler worms. They squished under my feet even though I tried so hard not to step on them. (RIP wormies.)
As we walked he brought up specific things that we did there. We played night games with other kids on the block here, so and so said this there, on and on until we stopped at a corner and he got down on his knee. Yes, in the wet, worm covered, sidewalk. We were under a street light and he said, and this is where I knew I loved you. That corner had held so much significance. It’s were I met his weird parents when they stopped to ask if I knew where he was. Before I even knew who he was. It was where we walked when he dressed up for his first Halloween ever. His parents didn’t believe in the holiday of “Satan” and despite being almost eighteen, he wasn’t allowed to participate. (They literally drove their car around trying to find us. Yeah, there’s worse parents than your own.) When he opened the small white box, I couldn’t comprehend what else he said. I just stood their dumbstruck looking at the princess cut diamond ring.
Kris, Will you marry me?