The closest thing I’ve had to a visitor this week was when a teenage neighbor caught me in my apartment wearing nothing but an ankle bracelet. He was skulking around in the alley and saw me through the kitchen window. I live alone, and I have embraced the freedom of being able to routinely wander around my apartment naked as a jail bird.
I heard a noise at the window and walked up to investigate. I looked down about three feet from where I stood to see a pleased, yet very surprised expression on the face of one of my teenage neighbors. I didn’t know how best to react, so I went with a quick, “Oh! Hi! Um,” and I hit the floor immediately. I laid there for a moment, thinking maybe he would go away, but when I heard no such movement from the alley, I crawled on my hands and knees like a soldier in a trench to the next room to grab a bathrobe. I have a lot of robes. Over the years, I’ve accumulated something of an arsenal of matching sleepwear (the vast majority not being sexy, and leaning more in the direction of androgynous, pocketed flannel sleep suits). This wardrobe has swung into full use since I’ve been on house arrest.
I had been standing in my kitchen, contemplating plans for the evening, wondering if it would be wise to invite someone over in the interest of engaging in general human interaction. Isolation can be maddening. It’s nice to have the occasional shout from the distant shores of sanity and invite someone in from the Free world to remind me of what’s out there.
I’ve been spending time with a new friend who loves to remind me of what’s out there. I’ve taken my last few Earned Leaves with him, walking along Melrose and getting coffee. He leads a strange life, owning a music/whiskey festival that feeds plenty of income, and with that he only works about 3 months a year. He travels often, taking scuba-diving vacations in Thailand and yachting trips in Western Europe. He has told me about his adventures during our coffee dates. His stories are a far cry from what my life is at the moment, but I like to hear them nonetheless. Most of my friends have been overly sensitive about telling me plans that I can’t be a part of, but he thinks it’s good for me to hear, so I will remember what to look forward to when I’m free again. He has a point.
Coffee dates with him have been the closest thing I’ve had to dating recently. My interest in pursuing dating has dwindled. In the beginning of my home confinement, I dabbled in online dating… It was all ill-fated, and I quickly realized that it usually led to me being cornered in my apartment by a hormone-stricken man with a possible fetish for bondage. It’s easy to escape a bad date in public, but when they’re sitting on your couch and your bed is ten feet away, it can get awkward when you’re not feeling particularly friendly. I only had two dates before I deleted the online profile and swore off internet dating forever.
208 days to go.