By: Heather Somaini
Nothing about my relationship with Tere has ever been boring. We met online, she flew up to San Francisco to see me on a whim, she kissed me the first time we met (that part was a bit forward I will say) and she didn’t go home until the next morning. I had been dating a ton right before we met – remember I was the poster child for lonely lesbians. None of my friends could keep the “datees” straight so I gave them all nicknames. And although Tere changed pretty much everything for me overnight, I felt obligated to keep the dates I had already set before the holidays. Looking back, I’m not exactly sure why – maybe I was keeping my options open.
So there I was up in SF and Tere had left that morning to head back to LA. I really wanted to see her again as soon as possible but I was up there for another 4 days and my plans were chock full for when I arrived back home. The best solution (for me) was to ask her to fly up to SF again, have a proper dinner “date” on Friday night, and then stay over and drive back to LA with me on Saturday. The only problem was that I had a date with someone else in LA Saturday night. So I steeled myself for the call and explained that I didn’t want to cancel the date but would LOVE to come see Tere right after. Bold – I know. I held my breath and waited for her answer. I mean, really, what woman in her right mind would agree to fly to another city for a date, spend 6 hours with me in a car only to be dropped off upon arrival so I could go on a date with someone else? She said “ok”. Sometime after, she told me that she figured the car ride alone would determine if there would be ANY additional dates. We had dinner at one of my favorite SF joints – Panchitas #3 www.panchitas3.net – it was awesome. It’s small and the food is great which made me look like I actually knew something about the SF foodie scene. We had a great drive back to LA – talking non-stop. I dropped Tere off at her car at LAX and rushed home to unpack my car. I met my date, a lovely PhD student, at a bar/restaurant in Venice. I had a lot of fun but all I could think about was getting to Tere in Long Beach.
I finally got on the road and realized I had no idea where I was going. How had I lived in LA for almost 10 years and never been to Long Beach? I called Tere and she agreed to act as my personal GPS system. A few blocks from her house, she said “It’s #45, the front door is unlocked, find me” and then hung up. Uh-oh. I found a parking spot and started walking. It was ridiculously quiet and dark. I was very close to the ocean and I could hear the waves and smell the salt air. I kept repeating the house number, trying not to forget it. Did she say 45 or 42? I found the house; it was dark. I tried the door; it opened. Was I in the right place? I threw caution to the wind and started up the stairs. At the landing, I could continue up another set of stairs or try one of 3 doors. I checked the stairs; they led to a roof deck. I checked the open door; it led to an office. I had 2 closed door options – which one to try first? I took a guess and there was Tere with a glass of champagne for me and a roaring fireplace – pretty nice!
I found out later that Tere’s good friend John was actually staying with her while he was in escrow on his new house. If I had gone through that other door, I would have met him and his Chocolate Labrador!
[Photo Credit: Flickr member: Two Steps Behind]