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Girl I could never have
This previous week I had been on a seven day cruise with my family and like eight thousand other people there. I am not really a very social person, so I really didn't expect much more than to just hang out with my family (we had a bunch of family members there, so there were many people to talk to). However, about halfway through the week, very randomly a girl passed me going somewhere, and I made a joke because I had seen her fall a couple minutes earlier. We were on the top deck so it was somewhat windy and noisy, so she didn't really hear me the first couple of times I said it, so I went over to her to repeat myself. From there we started talking about everything and nothing for quite a while. She was a very easy person to talk to so despite the fact that I don't generally talk to people very well, our conversation really flowed and nothing was really ever awkward or anything. From there we went off to the rear of the ship to watch the sunset behind us, going down over the sea, and it was a really romantic occasion, especially since neither of us really ever see sunsets over the sea. After that, we decided it was too noisy there, due to a plethora of people and the music coming from the nearby bar. So I asked her if she knew a good place to have some peace, since it seemed to me like anywhere I went there were people and noise, and she lead me to the very front of the ship, where you could lean over the balcony and watch the water. We were very far from most people and most lights, so not only was it quiet, but dark, so we could easily see the stars above. We kept talking there for approximately three hours, under the stars and with the faint sound of waves beneath us. I could feel that we were getting very close. Even on this first night that I had met her, we were discussing really deep things that I generally don't even talk to my better friends about, and that was a huge hint to me that she was something else. I was really lucky to find her of all people, because she was friendly and had excellent morals, which is something that is hard to find with most girls I have ever known. Eventually, as the night finished settling in, she started getting cold, and I wrapped my arms around her and was amazed at how well we fit together. We saw several shooting stars while we were out, and it felt very symbolic. Unfortunately, we had to part eventually, so we promised to meet up the next day, and she said good night, carefully placing a kiss on my cheek before strolling off towards her quarters. I felt very ecstatic, and really didn't feel like going off to bed myself, despite the fact that we had talked until around 2 in the morning. That was the best I had felt, and would ever feel, on that cruise.
The next day, I wandered the deck, wondering why I was so foolish to not ask her where she would be when, so that we could meet up. Then I also realized that we hadn't even exchanged names in the whole night we spent together. I didn't worry about it too much most of the day, because I decided that the most likely place that I would find her would be the same place we had spent the evening around the same time that we met, shortly after dinner on the front balcony. Therefore, after dinner I devised a scheme to ditch my cousins to steal off to the balcony, and there I waited. For the whole evening. And much of the night.
I went off to bed without seeing her again in a great deal of confusion. I didn't know whether I should consider that she ditched me or that she didn't think to look there and was searching the rest of the ship for me, or if there was some other complication that came up or what. However, I was still partially on the emotional high that I had received from the first night that I slept fairly easily that night.
I spent much of the next day searching for this mysterious girl. We were, after all, on a boat; there were only so many places she could go, even if she were avoiding me. She couldn't have just disappeared... So I paced, and I paced, patrolling the most likely places I believed I would find her. Then, shortly after dinner that day I saw her: I was a couple of floors above her, and I could see down to where she was. However, I wasn't quite sure that it was her, because then I realized that I didn't really get a good look at her face, since it was dark for the vast majority of the time we had been together and we were stargazing and sunset-watching for most of it. So I stayed where I was, trying to get a good look at her, and also deciding what to say when I decided it was her, since she was in a group of five other people, and I didn't want to talk to all of them. Finally I summoned the courage to go down there, but by the time I arrived the whole group had already gone! So I ran off in the direction that they had to have went, hoping that I would catch a fleeting glimpse of her or somebody in her party to indicate where they were going. I sprinted into the lobby, where the elevators were, just in time to see them through the closing elevator doors. I watched the light that told me which floor they would depart on, and it indicated that the elevator stopped six floors down from where I was. So I take off towards the stairs, and leap over whole 8 step flights in an attempt to catch her before she wandered out of sight again. I leaped the final flight to land in the lobby of the 3rd floor, where they supposedly exited the elevator, and my heart sunk when I found nobody present. So I headed off in what I considered to be the most likely direction of their departure, speedwalking this time since there were many cruise employees glaring at me. Luck was with me, because I saw the last glimpse of their flip-flops going up a flight of stairs towards a certain lounge. I charge up the stairs, and nearly bowl over a man coming down the opposite direction. I was wearing one of my Husker shirts at the time, and the man commented about it, and I felt obligated to respond, since it was only polite. To my dismay, the man had delayed my approach just long enough that I completely lost sight of the anonymous girl and her posse. It was a relatively secluded area, so I figured that they were probably headed for one of the nearby lounges or arcades, of which there were three or four. I searched every one, sprinting in between them to try and make up time, but she was nowhere to be found. However, I did not let this dishearten me, and I continued to search the area for any possible hidden room or cavity that might have escaped my glance the first time. Eventually I returned to the deck, where most of the activities and things to do are anyway, and just as I exited the lobby I caught sight of her, walking towards me. Finally my hopeless chase was over! I was so relieved to see her and went over to say hello. She walks past, as if in a hurry, and gives me nothing but a fleeting 'Oh, sorry' over her shoulder as she rushes off. I was crushed. My emotional roller coaster plummeted into the sea ten or so stories beneath me. I began to realize how much my whole body ached from the whole endeavor, and all I really wanted to do was go back to my room and curl up around a pillow, to attempt to make sense of what went wrong. How could we get so close to each other one day, and then the next she refuses to acknowledge that we ever met? Sleep came with much difficulty.
I was convinced that there must have been some sort of miscommunication, some confusion that gave her a terrible impression of me for whatever reason. So since she refused to talk to me, I figured that the only chance I had to straighten things out was by writing a note explaining that I just wanted to talk to her, nothing more intimate or physical or anything. I implemented several things to remind her of the first evening that we met; inside jokes and personal information that is a lot deeper than what you would generally find out about a person just by small talk. But through the whole process of writing this letter, I knew that it would do little to no good, and it became more of a good-bye letter thanking her for the fabulous experience she gave me, despite the fact that much of it was canceled out by the grief I had for the rest of the trip. I hinted that if there was any part of her that still liked me at all or that wanted to say anything, I would love to talk again, but I knew that it was a waste of graphite. I folded the paper a special way that one of my friends (female) had taught me, because I figured that she would be a lot less likely to just throw it away if it was an intricately devised work of art, rather than just a piece of paper. I knew that I was just overdoing it. I wrote it mostly to vent as much emotion as I could out of my head, so I could sleep. I couldn't stop thinking of her, day or night. After it was all folded, I wrote, quite honestly 'I took a couple of hours to prepare this, please take a couple minutes to humor me', as if it would slightly increase my chances of actually succeeding in the transaction.
I found her as she exited the dining hall on the last night that we were to be on the cruise. She had done her hair a different way, so I almost missed her as she walked past, since I was viewing her from behind as she exited. Just by happenstance, she dropped something she was holding, and turned back to pick it up, and I realized that it was her. I attempted to calm my heart, threatening to break a rib as it pounded relentlessly. This was the last chance I was going to get to repair our relationship, and perhaps stay in contact for a very long time, despite the 1000 miles or so in between our home towns. I decided that I didn't have the courage to approach her just then, so I climbed the stairs up a level so I could run ahead of her and catch her again as she passed the second staircase. And she did pass. And again I could not get myself to hand her the note. So I followed her a short ways, and she was about to get on the elevator. I knew that if I let her get on it, I would never see her again. So I jumped at the chance and offered her the letter as she stood waiting for the elevator. She refused to take it and walked off, abandoning the now open elevator. Again, I was crushed. I hadn't thought of the possibility that she wouldn't even take it. I thought at least she would relieve me of that burden in my hand, whether or not she decided to open it. I watched her walk off into the distance, and the only comfort I got the whole trip since that first day was the fact that she actually looked back at me. It was pleasant, that look, but it was agonizing. It only reminded me of all the fun I could have had, all the romance we had in store for us, if only I hadn't screwed up whatever it was that I screwed up. In a last-ditch effort, I tossed the note onto the floor of one of the balconies that I thought she might pass at some time, in a spot away from where most of the cleaning crews typically clean. I left it to fate to guide her to it, and perhaps I would finally be understood. I returned an hour or so later and it was no longer there. And now the thought torments me that she might or might not have picked it up.
Disembarking the ship, I thought that all my troubles would be over, since the likelihood of our paths ever crossing again was minuscule. I could leave that sickening emotional roller coaster on the cruise, and return to the life I know and am familiar with. However, Fate decided to torture me one last time, for I could see the nameless girl through a reflection in the window as we approached the customs officer. And you all know customs; they are ridiculously slow. So for a final twenty minutes, I was given the opportunity to gaze upon the girl I loved, but knew I could never have.
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