Do You Remember


Photography by Nick Lachance

Do you remember?

That’s all I can find myself thinking as I sit across from you, on the far side of the dreary classroom. I know the answer, actually. Of course you remember. I know you won’t forget. You simply don’t forget things like that. But I can’t help wondering if time will take it from you and crush it in its foul grip.

I remember.

We were so young. We still are, sitting here in a high school classroom. But we were even younger two years ago. And we were innocent and bright eyed. We had the world in front of us, not a care in the world until we met each other.

And then we went on our first date to a small little café called Coffee Beans. It was funny and sort of awkward, because I’d meant to take you to Coffee Culture, a more mainstream place, but we just ended up staying there on a whim.

It was miraculous that we even pulled it off. Your parents didn’t know where you were. Neither did mine. I’d even made up an excuse to get my mom to drive me into town to meet you. But once we got together in that little place, and sat across from each other with warm hot chocolates in our hands, oh boy, that’s when I felt the sparks shoot up from my toes to my fingertips.

I know you felt it too. Back then.

We talked and talked for hours. I don’t even remember what we talked about exactly. Isn’t that terrible? Perhaps it was because I wasn’t all that focused on the subject matter. I wanted to make you laugh, and I did, even if most of our laughter was partially out of nervousness.

Your eyes were what got me, though. Right away, they caught my attention and held it there and I was unable to tear away. I’d never seen such a gorgeous blend of blue and green; they reminded me of the sea and were just as mysterious. It always felt as if you could look straight through me and see into my soul. That hasn’t changed. I still feel that way when I look at you. I may be able to fool everyone else when I want, but not you.

Not you.

When our gazes locked that moment, neither of us realized how adept we’d get at being able to read one another. How could we? We were simply enjoying the moment – that small space in time. I miss being able to do that. You know, enjoy the moment.

I remember having to leave the café after our waitress kindly told us that the place was closing in ten minutes. We’d been there for hours. And neither of us had even looked at the time. We were far too engrossed with each other and the learning of who we were.

Then we stepped out of the restaurant and I walked you home, staying close to you but with my hands fiddling around in my coat pockets. I had been too anxious to try and reach out to grasp your hand. And as such, my palms had been sweaty anyway. It didn’t take us too long to walk to your house since it stood not far from the centre of town.

I’m smiling stupidly now, remembering this part. You turned to face me and we stared at each other for a long moment. Neither of us knew what to do. Hug? Kiss? Shake hands? Instead, you thanked me and I thanked you and we gave each other a long smile before I watched you disappear inside your front door.

I trudged back in the other direction and paused to check a message on my cell phone only a minute or so after leaving you. The message made my hands feel warmer, even though it was way below freezing outside.

And I’m smiling even wider now. I hope you aren’t noticing from your spot across the classroom. But I’m sure you do.

The message said, Is it weird that I already miss you?

And I responded, No. I miss you too. And then I added a smiley face for good measure.

But here we are, me sitting in my desk and you at yours halfway across the galaxy. Or so it seems. We are in a different time now, even though I know you remember. This isn’t what I just thought of. Instead, somewhere along the ride we fell apart.

Somewhere, between the lies, crying, trust issues and heartbreak we fell apart.

And I hate that. I hate that more than anything I’ve ever hated. It’s the strongest feeling I’ve ever felt. I’m not sure you know that I feel this way or that I will always feel this way. It’s been two years and the feeling has grown stronger.

I feel like it’s my fault, although I know it always takes two to tango. My mind is constantly conflicted now, my heart butting in about every five seconds to ruin the current rationale I was trying to form. I’m not sure of much anymore, except for two things:

That my desk chair will always be infinitely uncomfortable, and that I love you.

And now you’ve looked up and our eyes are locked again. That rush of feelings forces its way through my body again, even as I remain as still as stone. Those eyes are the same color to be sure, but now they know. They’re filled with memories galore, good and bad.

But what about that one that’s most important, that first one, where we accidentally went to the wrong restaurant, laughed and talked for hours?

The one where we fell in love for the first time.
Would you forget that? Has evil time taken it from you? That memory is the one where I will always have to ask the question.

Do you remember?