Posts Tagged settle in
Some of the strongest bonds you make in life are those shared with the coworkers you meet at your first job out of college. I remember my first week meeting one of the account directors who managed new business pitches. She was tall, gorgeous, fit, sassy as all hell and certainly knew how to dress to accentuate her sexiness.
From day one, she treated me like a kid — Like an intern. But, when I threw the sass right back at her, she elevated me in her mind to her equal and commented how we’d be good friends. I found her incredibly sexy and even had a small crush on her for some time. We continued to work together for a few years before I moved on to another agency, however, that didn’t mean we fell out of touch. Granted we saw far less of each other, but we still managed to find time to catch up either online or in person.
Since then, she’s left that agency and now works for a major radio broadcasting company. We’d been trying to meet up for cocktails after work for some time when she realized it would be really easy if she invited me to one of their concerts. She’d still be “on the clock,” but we’d get to hang and chat while taking in some awesome tunes. She sent me the calendar of upcoming performers and told me to pick a night.
We set plans to grab a quick drink before the Train concert so I could tell her all about my new man, CK. I marked my calendar, and as the date approached, I became more and more excited.
Then, days before the small venue concert, she told me to bring my man with me, however, there was a small change of plans. She apologized and told me she had to meet with clients, so she wouldn’t be able to grab a drink beforehand, but we could all go out after the show. “Sounds like a plan,” I replied.
That day, CK left work early and made his way home to change and drop off his bag. He met me outside my office, and we took the subway downtown to the venue. It was raining, so that didn’t help as we were trying to figure out where to go under an umbrella. We arrived just in time. I wasn’t able to find my friend, but soon enough, she found us seconds before the show started. She took us to the VIP section, and we settled in.
It was so good to see her. It’d been months since I’d seen her last, and she looked better than ever. Seeing her brought back a lot memories. We’d grown close over the two years we worked together. I came out after leaving the agency we worked at, and she was one of the people I decided to tell early on. She has a gay brother, so I knew she would be more than supportive. I had already talked to her quite a bit about CK, and she was thrilled with my new-found happiness.
As the concert began, my friend had to return to her clients to ensure they were thoroughly entertained. CK and I enjoyed each other’s company while we danced and bopped to the music. I was quite familiar with Train, but he wasn’t and neither was my friend. They both kept saying throughout the concert, “I had no idea this was Train!”
Let me tell you, they put on a good show. They audience was not the least bit energetic, which I’m sure is incredibly hard to perform for, but they did a stellar job! I spent most of the concert with my arms wrapped around CK from behind hugging him as we listened to the music swaying back-and-forth. We were being quite affectionate without making a spectacle of ourselves.
Afterwards, we all made our way to a little bar called The Macao Trading Co. We ventured downstairs, and the five of us cozied up to the bar for some cocktails and tapas plates. I felt a little awkward because I didn’t want to steal my friend away from her clients. I knew she had a job to do, and I didn’t want to interfere. But, I also knew, she wouldn’t neglect CK and I. She is a brilliant multi-tasker, I chatted a bit with one of the women on the walk to the bar, and we bonded when I learned we shared a common coworker/ex-coworker.
My friend ordered the group food and drinks to keep our bellies full and our spirits high. The food was AMAZING! I had a taste of everything, and loved/savored every bite! If you ever find yourself there, definitely be sure to try the mushroom and truffel croquettes. They are like heaven in your mouth!
When the two women were ready to call it a night, they said goodbye to my friend and made their way home. Finally, we could sit and relax and chat up a storm. CK and I were being affectionate, with my hand on his leg most of the night, but again, not drawing attention. I liked that about him. We could show we loved each other publicly without going over the top. It was interesting seeing him a bit on the quieter side. He’d met other friends before, but this time he was a bit quiet. When my friend started asking him more and more questioned, he opened right up, and they hit it off.
When CK excused himself to go to the restroom, of course we took the time to talk about him. She said, “I love him. I’d hang out with him outside you, and that’s saying a lot! He’s amazing!” I agreed with her and told her how amazing he really is. When I started to explain how well we hit it off and the conversations we’d had about our future, the smile on her face grew bigger and bigger.
It was amazing the information we covered while CK was in the bathroom. He was only gone about two minutes, but I managed to squeeze in so much gushing about him. As CK returned to the table, we were just turning the conversation to my friend’s love life. Apparently, she too found a man to make her happy. They’d been together for some time. I’d never see her so gaga for anyone before. She is a very powerful, successful, strong, beautiful woman who would intimidate the sh*t out of any man. Finally, she found a man who realized what he found and treated her right, all the while holding her attention. I was incredibly happy for her.
Not only were all three of us in love, but we were all at a bit of a crossroads in our careers. We were all faced with the decision to stay on our current path or shake things up and create a new path for ourselves. We all discussed our happiness with our current jobs, but fully discussed our lack of momentum and fulfillment in them. My friend told me I am too smart for my job gave both CK and I great career advice.
When the night was getting late, my friend was incredibly kind and picked up the entire tab. We went outside with our umbrellas, and she offered to share a cab with us. We rode north to CK’s apartment to settle in for the night. When we got out, I gave my friend a hug and said goodbye.
We got ready to go to bed, but not before fooling around a bit. We also talked about my friend, and he commented how much he liked her. I told him what she said while he was in the bathroom, and a smile lit up his face.
I was truly in love with this man. He meant so much to me. I had no problem picturing myself spending the rest of my life with him. I could imagine it all. No guy had ever treated me this way before. No guy put up with my sh*t like he did either. He was something special, and I realized this. So much so, I simply looked forward to spending more and more time with him, if not the rest of my life.Follow @onegayatatime
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Tuesday came and went quite uneventful in my relationship world. Smiles called and we talked for five minutes about our days.
When Wednesday arrived, I was starting to seriously worry Smiles wasn’t going to be attending my holiday party. I’d already asked a few times, and I didn’t want to be pushy, but the time had come to get a straight answer.
What a relief. I was worried he’d made other plans and didn’t know how to tell me. I’m not sure how I would have taken it had he said no. You may have been reading about a new slew of guys I was pursuing from a myriad of online dating venues. I wanted him by my side for the party, and I wanted him to meet my friends. Many had not met him yet, and if you read my blog, you know how important to me they are.
Apparently, I’d opened up the dialogue for the day. Smiles followed his last text with a picture message. “The final bowl.” I was laughing. “Haha. You made it! You didn’t have to eat it all if you were tired of it… Don’t forget about the sausages!” I know I made a lot, but he didn’t need to feel obligated to eat it all. “All good. It’s what I’m supposed to be on. I just laugh because it’s like a salad at the Cheesecake Factory — Much larger than it looks!”
I took the Thursday before my holiday party off. I need to do a lot to prepare and to finally settle into my new apartment. 40 people were expecting a party that lives up to my usual standards. I couldn’t disappoint.
I started in my room with probably the lowest priority, but the most fun project. I was detailing a tree on my bedroom wall. I was shocked it only took me two hours to make the tree decal out of black contact paper. “2 hours later, the tree is up…” I texted to Smiles. He immediately responded with support: “Cool. I forgot about that project!” He told me he’d slept-in quite late, but he was getting a lot of work done. And, since he’d finished season two of Vampire Diaries, he had nothing to distract him. “Nice. I’m cooking up a storm. Still no cable guy,” I replied. He didn’t realize I took Thursday off from work as well as Friday.
His next response could have knocked me over with a feather. “Wow. Lot of prep for Saturday! Want me to come over tonight and help?” This was the first time Smiles took such an interest in my life. It kind of came out of left field, but there were no complaints here! I made my feelings quite clear in my response: “I would love if you came over tonight! I need a consultant :)” I needed some design advice. I still had to hang pictures and light fixtures and the like. I could handle most of the cooking myself, but his design skills and good taste were going to get put to good use. “Still can’t lift anything, but happy to help with other stuff,” he added.
I asked him if 10:00 would work. I had volleyball, so that was the time I would be home. I didn’t want to give up a night with him just because of my game. The following made me about as giddy as a schoolgirl! “Oh yeah. It’s Thursday 😦 Was thinking I was coming over at 6:00ish. Yeah. I can do that. 10:00. But, maybe I could come watch volleyball?”
WHAT!? He wanted to come watch me play volleyball?! I’d mentioned it to both N and Broadway when I was dating them, but they never showed much interest in it. For him to volunteer without me ever even mentioning coming was amazing! “Yea! Sure! Come at 6,” I exclaimed.
We ironed out the logistics, and he made his way to Hoboken around 7:00. Every week I get a ride from my teammate I’ve known since high school. He also happens to be gay, so he was excited to finally meet Smiles. This would also be the first time my sister met Smiles as she gets a ride as well.
The two of us hopped in the backseat, and I introduced Smiles to my high school friend. When we picked up my sister, I introduced him again.
When we arrived at the gym, Smiles made himself comfortable and pulled out his iPhone. I knew this wasn’t going to be the most thrilling night of Smiles’ life, but it meant the world to me he wanted to come watch. I would look past the fact that he spent a lot of the time playing with his phone. I knew he was actually watching because between every game, I went over to sit with him, and he made comments on some of the plays I was involved in. The ironic part is, many of my teammates didn’t know I was gay. That night, I didn’t give them a definitive answer, but I’m sure they could have deduced the situation.
After the game, we went home, and Smiles helped me with a few things I needed to ask him about before I showered and we had a late dinner. While we ate our dinner on the couch, we watched TV until we grew tired. We made our way to my bedroom and dozed off for the night.
The next morning, we woke without an alarm and had breakfast. I thought Smiles would stay for a bit of the afternoon. My friend, P, was coming over to help me make food for the party. I informed her she’d be meeting Smiles, and she was thrilled and very excited. Instead, Smiles had to make his way home because he had work to do. Around noon, I said goodbye with a kiss and went back to preparing for the party. P arrived disappointed to find Smiles had gone, but we didn’t let that get us down. We spent the afternoon cooking up a storm. She was invaluable. I don’t think I could have done it without her.
I was in good spirits. I had an answer about Smiles’ attendance. He came to support me in one of my recreations. He helped me make decisions on decorating. All was good in my world. Now I just needed to find the time to finish cleaning and cooking for 40…Follow @onegayatatime
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At the ripe age of 26, I came to a life changing conclusion. I'm GAY!
It took me 26 years to realize this and come to terms with it, but coming out's been the best decision of my life.
This blog is about my dating life in NYC and what happens next...
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