Saturday, May 29, 2010

Memory Lane

Memory Lane is such a treacherous road. I pulled out the old hard drive that contains back-up files of the past 8 years of my digital life, and I realized that no matter how many times you go through and machete the hell out of that trail, it always ends up overgrown. The fact that it always grows back isn’t always terrible, it’s just different branches from the same trees with new individual leaves. And to get through without too many scratches, you have to hack them down sometimes.

All of my ex-boyfriends except for one live in New York. Today, I ran into one of the most prominent people in a particular point in my life. He was the treasure of my heart for a year and a half, and it ended badly and immaturely. He looks great and seems to be doing well, although maybe a little skittish around me. He has good reason to be wary of me. The first time I saw him at a party a few months after we broke up, I drank a bit too much and told him in front of the entire room, “That awful mustache has gotta go.” Certainly not my finest or proudest moment, but I apologized for it later, and I was granted forgiveness.

Looking at the photos of us dancing and giggling and kissing brought back all of the wonderful details of young love, and how very silly it all is. We were a beautiful couple, him with cinnamon colored skin and jet-black hair, me with the flawless snow-white complexion and dark dyed hair, both of us with the brilliant smiles that beam with youthful optimism. And we had little but fun together, going on road trips around the Southeastern US and once to Hawaii with my family.

Today in the park, the two of us didn’t look too different or much older than we did those five or so years ago, but that palpable carefree exuberance is gone from both of us, possibly forever. Maybe the city took it out of us. Or perhaps if I can keep from pulling out my machete so frequently, I can allow myself to get scratched and maybe notice some of the older trees a little off the trail that seem to stay the same year after year.

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