My boyfriend will be in Dallas, TX in exactly 10 days.
We will have been apart since December 23, 2010: 135 days, 4 1/2 months, 1/3 of a year. It hasn’t been easy, but it worked because, well, we’re just awesome.
When I left the states last August, my friend Jed & I flew from Dallas to Dublin. In Dublin, we were planning on visiting our friend Flo. He’s French, studied with us at Baylor for the spring semester of 2010, was doing his summer internship in Dublin, and would be at the University of Caen with us in France during the fall. He picked us up from the Dublin airport at the glorious hour of 8 in the morning (now that’s a true friend), and we headed back to his apartment. Flo seemed unusually chipper for that early in the morning, so we could only assume that he was still drunk from the night before.
We arrived at his apartment. When we walked in, I noticed some sort of creature curled up in the armchair. Hmm, I asked myself, is this the Michel that Flo had tagged in the same status as Jed & I about a week ago? (It had said something like “Jed, Haley, and Michel: GET READY.”) I had wondered who this Michel would be, and the verdict was… hungover. Obviously him and Flo reacted in different ways. We all introduced ourselves, I dropped off my stuff, and the three of us left Flo’s apartment to go explore while Michel stayed comfortably under his blanket.
Sometime after lunch and after the recovery period, Michel met up with us downtown. He seemed much better now, so I started up a normal conversation. I learned that he had studied abroad in Ireland with my friend Flo for a year, so that’s how they knew each other. He spoke near-perfect English (I learned this after he answered my first question… “So – do you speak English?”), had never been to the US before, and was from Lille. “Where exactly is that…?” I had asked. He laughed and filled me in, and from there, the four of us continued to explore.
After taking a little break at Flo’s apartment after our afternoon in Dublin, we wanted to go to the Guinness Factory. Michel had already been, so once again we left while he stayed at the apartment. After our tour, the four of us headed to the Temple Bar area to enjoy some genuine Irish pubs.
Being the graceful, elegant woman that I am, I did something terrible to my ankle during the walk from the Guinness factory to the Temple Bar area. By the end of the night, it wasn’t feeling good at all, and the last thing I wanted to do was walk all the way back to Flo’s apartment. Michel called a cab for us, and even paid. Chivalry is not dead! It was there that, inevitably, I decided I liked this guy. Pays for a taxi to save me from the pain of my crippled ankle? Perfect. French? Nice bonus. Interesting and funny? Even better. (Did I mention that he resembles a young, better-looking Jeff Goldblum? I am quite the lucky lady.)
Once everyone arrived at Flo’s place, the party was not over. We all stayed up a little longer and talked, but by the next morning, Michel was gone before anyone had woken up. Yet as soon as I checked my computer, I had a message from him. It put a smile on my face, and so did all of the others that followed throughout the next 4 months. We met quickly, but we took our time to actually get to know each other. In France, he lived 3 hours away from me, but that didn’t stop us. We took turns visiting, and that made our new relationship that much more worthwhile.
And 10 days from now, it will be time for another visit. Michel will visit me for the who-knows-how-many-th time, and the US for the first time. Grand Canyon and Las Vegas, here we come!