I stared at the black and white suit for a bitter part of five minutes. Contemplating If I should go on this date or not. After spending six long months looking for Jennifer I decided it was best that I gave up. Even though after hearing the inspiring tale that was told to me by Mary. I had to remind myself that we are completely two different people, who lived in two different eras. Mary lived in a time where face-to-face communication was necessary to find the one you loved. Where I lived in a time where social media was taking over and everyone talked through the power of the internet. If I could, I would trade places with Mary any day of the week. Maybe, just Maybe, finding Jennifer wouldn’t be so hard. But I couldn’t indulge on that any further. I had a date tonight and the girl I was going with deserved my full attention.
“Hey! You ready yet?” asked Zoe.
I quickly snapped out of my train of thought and looked to see my sister standing close to my door with her left hand pressed firmly on the door and her right hand resting on her hip. She rapidly tapped her fingers on my door looking at me like it was a life or death situation.
“I’m almost ready,” I replied.
“Dude! You don’t have your clothes on yet. And why are you wearing that? You’re going on a date, not a funeral,” said Zoe.
“I thought I look classy tonight,” I stated.
Zoe gave me this crazed look as if I had lost my mind or something, “Okay dad, whatever you say.”
I looked back at the black and white suit with the polish black dress shoes at the bottom. I grabbed it and put it back in the closet from where it came from. Zoe walked up to me and laid her hand gently on my shoulder.
“What’s wrong, Sam?” questioned Zoe.
“I don’t know if I want to go,” I stuttered.
“I know you don’t, but you can’t keep hoping that she’s going to walk back into your life. You need to find someone else,” Zoe explained.
She was right I couldn’t keep looking for Jennifer my whole life. For all I know, she probably went back to her hometown, or found another guy and is happy with him. I don’t know really, and I may never know.
“You’re right, but now I don’t know what to wear,” I said.
Zoe’s mouth grew from ear to ear and she walked to my closet rummaging through my clothes. She pulled out a blue-collar shirt and black jeans with some white shoes. She laid them out across my bed and she looked back at them contemplating. She frantically shook her head no and took the shirt back and pulled out a green shirt that my mother gave me for Christmas.
“I’m not wearing that green shirt,” I stated.
“Mom and dad are downstairs waiting to see you off on your date. The least you can do is wear this abomination of a shirt that mom gave you. It’ll make her happy and show how we appreciated everything that she does for us,” Zoe explained.
“That was the lamest excuses I have ever heard from you, “I said.
“Was it though,” she said back smiling.
I shook my head and put on the clothes that Zoe had picked out for me. If there was one thing I could count on her for, it would be getting me ready for a date. She would always say “Impress a girl the first time she’ll come back. Do it the second time and she’ll stay forever.” I always thought the saying was stupid, but it did prove true a few times, minus the forever part.
I made it downstairs to see my mom washing the dishes and my dad stood behind her drinking out of his favorite cup. They barely looked a day over fifty, but I guess that was a good thing. My mom looked up to see me at the foot of the stairs. She grew a big smile as she grabbed the dry the towel next to her.
“You’re wearing the shirt I got you for Christmas, “said my mom.
“You’re brave, son,” said my dad.
My mom struck him with the towel in her hand as he laughed a little. “I think the shirt looks good on him. Emerald was always my favorite color,” said my mom.
“Exactly, it’s your favorite, not Samuel favorite. Why you didn’t wear the blue shirt?” asked my dad.
I glanced at Zoe for a second, just to see here shrugged her shoulders. Not wanting to admit she made the wrong choice.
“Just thought I show mom that I appreciate her,” I lied.
“If you say so,” said my dad as he finished his drink.
“Just be safe and have a good time,” my dad added.
“I will, dad,” I said back.
I watched as my dad went upstairs and vanished behind the wall. I started to wonder if I would ever get as lucky as my dad. My dad too has spent his twenties looking for the love of his life. I think he got lucky when he met my mom.
“Well, I’m going back to reading my book. Have a nice night, Samuel,” said my mom.
“I will mom,” I said hugging her.
Zoe walked me outside, “That was, interesting,” said Zoe.
“It actually wasn’t so bad,” I said to her.
She looked at me again like I was crazy and walked back into the house, not saying another word to me.
Once I made it to the restaurant I looked at my phone to get an idea of who I was looking for. Her name was Amber, she had curly blonde hair and fair skin. I looked around the restaurant to see if I could point her out in the crowd, but I couldn’t. I texted her to see if she was here and sat down near the entrance in case she didn’t show.
I waited a few minutes until my phone went off. I looked down to see her name on my phone with a message. It read “I’m in the back of the restaurant on the left.” I put the phone back in my pocket and headed towards the back.
I saw Amber staring at the window with her arms crossing. Her right fingers tapping her left forearm. She wore a blue blouse and her hair was curly. I slowed down for a minute to admire the amount of effort she made to look great for our date.
“Hi, Amber,” I said softly.
Amber looked at me and smiled raising her hand towards me. “Samuel, it’s great to actually meet you in person,” she stated.
We laughed a little as I shook her hand. My heartbeat picked up a little as I let go. She continued to smile at me as she sat back down fixing her hair. I slowly sat across from while my arms were slightly shaking, along with my legs. I was able to sit down quick enough without her noticing my body’s reaction.
“I’m sorry, I was a little nervous. Thought I was being catfished, like those people on the show,” Explained Amber.
“I understand, can’t be too careful these days,” I assured her.
“True, but please have a seat,” said Amber.
We spent the next hour and a half talking about various topics in the world and life itself. But during the whole time, we were talking. I couldn’t stop thinking about Jennifer and her personality. That night at the carnival rushed me like a tidal wave. Her smile, her laugh, her voice. It got to the point to where I blocked out Amber, that her voice became the teacher from Charlie Brown.
“What’s her name?” Asked Amber.
Snapping me out my thought of Jennifer I quickly looked at her as she patiently waited for me to answer her question.
“I’m sorry?” I asked in return.
“What’s her name, the girl that you’re thinking about?” asked Amber.
“Who said I was thinking about a girl?” I asked back.
“I’ve been on plenty of dates where I have seen guys have that same look. And it’s always about another girl,” explained Amber.
I felt bad at that moment when she told me that. But she was right I was thinking about Jennifer. And I couldn’t stop thinking about her that whole night. It wasn’t fair to Amber, she was a sweet girl and she deserved better.
“Her name is Jennifer, “I said.
“Tell me about her,” said Amber.
I spent the next few minutes telling her everything about the night I first met her. The carnival, the rides, the games. Even how I forgot to get her number. Amber smiled, laughed, and cried as I told her the story.
“These are stories you find in books and movies. Never thought I would’ve seen one come to life,” said Amber. She grabbed a napkin off the table and gently tapped under both her eyes.
“You and me both,” I said.
We sat there for a few seconds quiet. Again, I felt bad for Amber, for wasting her time. She spent a month getting to know me. Probably couldn’t wait to see me. But all I did was turned her good night into a nightmare.
“I’m sorry for wasting your time, Amber,” I said softly.
“No, no, It’s okay. Compared to the rest I’ve met. You were sincere about her. I think you should keep looking. I’m sure you’ll find her,” stated Amber.
“You sure?” I asked.
“You two deserve to be together. I have faith that you’ll find her one day. Even if it’s not tonight or tomorrow. But one day you will. Just hold on to her locket just a little while longer,” said Amber.
I looked down to see the locket hanging from my neck. I had it for so long that I forget that it was there some time. I guess it was for the best though, to remind me that the love of my life is out there and she’s waiting for me. I looked back at Amber once again who gave me a half-hearted smile.
“So, what are you going to do?” asked Amber.
“I’m going to keep looking for her.”