Take the Long Way Home

I left church feeling a lot better about this place. The mass I attended reminded me of the 7:00 AM mass in my home town — all parishioners were over 40 (or so it seemed), and the celebrant was nearly twice the average age of the parishioners. At 19, everybody seems old except you and your peers.

For some reason, I sat in the middle. I never sit in the back unless I’m late, and I wasn’t brave enough to sit in the front pew.  Besides, folks are really picky about their seats in church. Everyone has a place, and I don’t think I’ll ever get used to that. Today I just observed to see who sat with whom and took note of where the open spots were. I don’t take up too much space, so I see where I might insert myself next week.

On the way back, I took the long way home–bypassing the shortcut–though it tried to lure me down that path with such beauty and mystery. I took the paved path instead and stopped by the Mini BX to pick up some fruit, water, snacks, and a few magazines. I get the feeling I’ll need plenty of water and a few magazines. There’s not much stirring around here except wildlife.

I dropped off my things in my room and took a quick tour of my surroundings.  I found the laundry room, a few vending machines, and an ice machine.  On the way back, a red-headed British girl stepped out of her room and blocked my path.

Hi, I’m Katie.  You must be the new girl.

Wow, news travels fast around here. I’m Michelle.

Yes, we don’t miss much — especially when someone new comes to Eddie’s.

I see. So, where is everybody?

Probably hungover from last night. Some of the guys in Maintenance threw a party upstairs.Surprised you didn’t hear it.

No, I was asleep — exhausted from the flight. How was it?

Lame…not my cup o’ tea. I went to the Airman’s Club for a bit. 

Oh. Well, I need to do some unpacking.

Ok. See you around. I’m going to the Chow Hall around 5. Care to come with?

Sure. I live…

I already know where you live.  I’ll see you then.

I unpacked a little and placed things in drawers before taking a nap. I woke up at 5 to the sound of Pink Floyd playing next door and Katie rapping on my door.

Girl, I thought you were dead in there. You ok?

Yea, just jet-lagged, I guess.

Does Eric play his music this loudly all the time?

No, just lately. I’m sure he’ll tell you what’s wrong when you go to work tomorrow.

He’s taking me to the BX later to get a TV.

Brace yourself. He drives like a maniac.

After dinner, we sat on the patio and talked about all sorts of things. Adrian came out and joined us. Then a few guys from Maintenance stopped by with food and started grilling. It was a beautiful evening . The stars were out, but the temps were quickly dropping, and that was my cue to go. Adrian escorted me to my room and offered to walk with me to work in the morning. I’m not sure whether this is how dating begins, but if it is, I think I like it.

Part XII – Skeeter Wings


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