Shari said to bring her back a rock. I remembered this as we pulled into the airport.
“The moment something important happens I want you to look down at your feet and pick up a rock. Then come back and tell me the story. I have a bowl full of rocks with stories at home,” she had said.
Crap. I forgot. Or nothing important had happened. Or important things happened and I was too engrossed in them to be thinking about rocks.
Earlier we took a hike into the wilderness beyond the arboretum to a secret waterfall. He showed me blue jade and seed pods and skeletal leaf remains. I showed him my favorite spot. He’s also a scientist so I got an extensive lesson in invasive species and freshwater shrimp. He also wants to start a business and I got to hear about that too. We checked the pig traps, used ropes to climb steep inclines and ran our hands under the gentle waterfall to cool off from the heat.
Back down at the arboretum he showed me his favorite banyan. He talked about spirits in a sacred Hawaiian burial ground and I told him about my experience with Autobiography of a Yogi. As he leaned against the tree I struggled to resist the magnetic urge to fall into his arms and stay there forever.
Every second of the day was innocent childlike perfection. Every second I wanted to touch him but didn’t. I didn’t carelessly jump into anything. I didn’t plead for attention. I didn’t let my doubts or fears take over in my head. I only did what I set out to do – I was my incredible self.
At the airport I told him how I felt. Simple and straightforward, I said, “You are the most incredible man I’ve ever met.”
He made a funny face to suggest I was crazy. Then he kissed me.
I looked down at my feet. No rocks. But for you, my dear Shari, a story about a very sweet, very simple kiss. One that remained on my lips for the entire flight home. One that is going to carry me a very long way.
Just like Bono says: Only love can leave such a mark
Happy Valentine’s Day everyone
Much love to you all