Updated: Dec 10, 2019
I saw you from across the bar; your long hair tucked behind your ears, a few strands masking your eyes. You were playing pool with a girl you came out with, both of you focusing on the movement of the ball when it was your turn.
I was on vacation in Los Angeles at the time, sitting with friends at the corner booth, watching from a distance. I pointed you out to them, noticing how the bright lights above the pool table accentuated your cheek bones and how when you smiled your eyes would brighten.
I had a few drinks and was feeling bold; maybe a little cocky, too. I had turned to my friends and told them that I knew I was going to kiss you that night.
We both happened to get up to order drinks at the same time and landed side by side, elbows on the cold, marble bar. You told me you liked the song on the jukebox and then asked if I was from LA, saying I didn't look like a California girl. I told you I was from New York and was in town for the next week visiting family. You said that this was your favorite bar to go to with friends.
Our small talk soon turned into meaningful conversation before we both went back to our opposite corners of the bar. Every couple of minutes I would glance over and catch your eyes on mine. You'd smile and I'd smile back. As the end of the night grew closer, I watched you leave with the girl you were with.
Turning back to my friends, we ordered another round of drinks and the conversation picked back up. But I was still thinking of you and the small, yet substantial interaction we had.
Just a few moments later, you walked back into the bar alone and were searching for me. Our eyes met and you walked over to our table, introducing yourself to everyone and asking if you could take a seat.
There were people all around us; the music was loud and ringing; the lights seemingly dimmer; but our eyes never drifted. No matter how much noise there was, I still only heard your voice. No matter how many others were around me, you still only saw me.
That's how I like to remember you, Aaron.
As the guy who came back to the bar to kiss the girl from New York. To leave a lasting first impression of a night out with a stranger.
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