September 29, 2006


My plane was delayed. By the time we boarded, the events of the week and the work of the conference had taken their toll. I was tired and restless.

I closed my eyes and began to replay the night before, and some of the conversations that led up to it. How we flirted in the staff office as I prepped the meeting materials, although we both admitted that we flirt with everyone. The agreement to meet for a drink after the booth closed, with the implication that this was more than just happy hour, and not planned as a group get together.

I skipped over the memory of waiting for you as our planned time came and went. When you finally arrived, two hours after expected, it was almost too late. The people who had stayed with me were taking their leave, and I would have been gone as well, and our chance would have been missed.

I remembered the moments in front of the bar, and moving to a table as the bartender gave us our last drinks before he closed. The closeness of our barstools, the "accidental" brushes when our legs shifted. And the knowledge, for us both, that this was not about my marriage or yours. It was only about a man who likes to have fun, and a woman in need of reaffirming something she may have lost or may not have had to begin with.

As I rewound and replayed stepping into the elevator, I smiled at the memory of you pressing first the top floor, then the lobby, to make our time on board last longer. We exited on your floor, and snuck through the hallway like kids sneaking into a closed dormitory after curfew. Your keycard stuck a few time before working, heightening the tension. Once inside, we barely got the door closed before you had me pinned to the wall, your hands beneath my sweater, my arms flung over your shoulders. As we hastily stumbled toward the bed, quickly moving aside your laptop and other items tossed there before you left earlier (perhaps I was wrong in assuming you knew we'd be coming back there) I lost track of time.

I drifted to sleep on the plane, remembering bits and moments that gave me a flutter in my stomach and a familiar ache. There is a line I can't cross, but we didn't reach it yet. Even if we don't take another step in that direction, even if we go back to just the co-workers we were a week ago, revisiting those few hours can take me back.

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