Sunday, July 24, 2005

The Long Hall

'I love this pub' she said, 'we used to come here, Shay and me.'

We've had a nice evening - saw a play, few pints in Grogan's. It's getting late, and we wind up in The Long Hall.

'Oh, no, you wouldn't know him - he was my first boyfriend, before you know who. I don't think I've even told you about him yet. We used to come here all the time, haven't really been here in ages'.

She looked into the glass.

'I've had the best times here - once, I came here, it was without Shay, just out with some mates. Well, it was one of those nights, you know, where you meet someone'.

Looking up, smiling as she caught my eyes, her face suddenly fell.

'Nothing happened - it wasn't that type of thing - I didn't do anything. He was just, you know, it was one of those times, we just got on together'.

Like I would care whether she did the dirt or not. Why this propriety? I don't even know her, her ex, either of them. It seems clear she puts boundaries on herself.

Suddenly the drink seems flat, danger and excitment of making a new friend turns into something predictable - dull and regimented, and I wonder what I've said, what thoughts I should have censored.

Yesterday or maybe the day before, over some wine, my best friend and I discussed how hard it is to meet anyone anymore. Not talking about sex, more the meeting of minds, that openness and connection that used to be easy. I blaimed myself then, but I'm not sure anymore, maybe I'm up for it but the people I meet aren't.

I look at my watch, 'isn't your night-link going at two?' I say.

>She looks down too 'Jesus you're right' she says.

We leave. I feel tired.

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