Hunger Games

Dan Durr Issue: Section:

I’d been pulling at my brain for hours on writing.  Rain had cancelled vague beach plans and i found myself trying to force a focus on an otherwise dreary saturday.  I’d promised to write a piece on food and it had been expected at least a day or two before the weekend.  I’d been juggling with thoughts on format, style and voice for so long that a topic seemed comically distant.

A pot and a half of espresso later i find myself no further along and using my roommate as a sounding board, certain topics garnered conversation but ultimately nothing seems like i would enjoy writing it for more than a paragraph or two.  “Ten foods I’d eat if I weren’t Vegetarian”, “Ultimate Stoner Foods” “Hunting for Vegetarian Bar food”  “How to Travel for Months at a time without eating a Doritos Taco”  were all fun to joke about but none seemed to fit stylistically with wherever it was i wanted this to go.  Where did i want this to go?  Realizing I had been trying to write for hours and that the espresso was the only thing keeping me going i poured a bowl of cereal.  As i walked to the fridge for milk i felt my cell phone vibrate and stopped to read a text.

She was leaving town.  I knew that was the plan when she started the Masters program but i always told myself that she was far too here to ever be anywhere else.  It had been years and i never figured we’d see each other again anyway so i don’t know why it should bother me but i knew i’d miss her if she left.  I replied asking if she had time for dinner or drinks.  She said she would try but had to see how packing went and asked if i need anything for my place from her place.  I said i’d take a small guitar amp off her hands and agreed to come meet her that afternoon. 

We talked for a few minutes, realized how badly we wanted to actually catch up and parted ways.   I texted a few hours later asking again about drinks or dinner, we eventually agreed to lunch on monday.  I went to a birthday party that night but my head was spinning and i left after a few minutes.

The monday at lunch i had an omlet and she a crabcake sandwich, i realized five things.  One, a great thing about well made food is how easy it is to just ignore eating and lose yourself in conversation.  Two,  i had to try to keep myself from losing myself in her eyes.  Three, years apart were nothing, it was like catching up after a really long day and we hung on each other’s every word.  Four, hours with her seemed like minutes.  Five, when i don’t pay attention i can still drink way too many cups of coffee without thinking about it, this is a dangerous habit.  

We hung out the most of rest of the day, parted ways briefly when she met some friends for dinner at a trendy chinese bistro and i went home and walked and fed my dog.  Meeting up for drinks later i found myself having trouble with number two but she didn’t seem to mind.  

I found myself home at two in the morning, regretting nothing but realizing i hadn’t eaten anything since the long lunch i heated up a frozen pizza and hit the hay. 

The next morning i woke, grabbed coffees and a muffin and headed her way.  I helped her run a few last minute errands and then drove her to the airport.  I loaded her luggage onto a cart and kissed her goodbye wondering if it would be our last or if we would keep our half promises to visit.  I drove from the airport and life started to make its way back onto my radar, i had skipped everything i had planned for the last three days.  I had hardly remembered to eat food, let alone write it.  I wonder what i’ll write?  I wonder when i’ll get it in? 

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