Once he got to the cafe, he sat there in the car for five minutes. He was paralyzed with apprehension. He didn’t know what to say. What if she wasn’t there? He almost started the car and went home. Then he had an idea. Maybe, just maybe she might respond to a post. He walked into the cafe and looked around. He didn’t see her, and his heart went heavy. He got a coffee and sat down at one of the rent-a-computers. He had an hour. Pulling up her blog, he went to the About page and wrote a comment.
Yes, I disappeared for a while. I got so wrapped up in my blog, I forgot how to live. It scared me. I should have been brave enough to let people know what was going on. Instead, I felt guilty and slammed the door shut.
For a reason that doesn’t matter, I turned my computer back on. I saw all the email and started reading. Your emails changed my mind. I’ve decided that maybe quality is better than quantity and that I can start writing again. Your stories feel like old friends. I love the way you write.
He sent the comment and hoped that by some chance that they went to her email first. He sipped his coffee and checked the weather after looking around the room. She was at the counter. His heart pumped fast and he fought the urge to go over and talk to her. He watched her over the top of the computer. She walked over to the back counter and booted up a computer. He hoped she’d read his comment. He tried to read the newspaper online, but he couldn’t concentrate. Then he realized that he couldn’t access his email from this rent-a-computer. So, he booted up his blog and checked to see if there were any new comments. Nothing. Rather than get more flustered, he started a new post.
Hello Readers. Yes, I fell off the blogsphere. I let the writing take over my soul and forgot what it was like to smell the coffee. And yes, it’s pretty hard to write about coffee or life if you don’t drink or live. So, I’m back. I’m going to work on quality, not quantity.
If you like the way I write, be sure to check out this blog….. She writes beautifully. Sometimes it’s like looking in a mirror.
He posted and then waited. Nothing. He went through his comics, a few other blogs and then checked his blog again. There was still nothing. He looked over at the counter and saw that she was looking intently at her computer. He swore that her hands were moving on the keyboard. He had 25 minutes left on the computer.
He checked his blog again and there was an answer.
I’m so pleased to see that you’ve decided to write again. I have felt almost bereft. It was as if a dear friend I’d known for ages had been lost. It was why I kept emailing you. I hoped I’d make a difference in your life and that maybe you’d write once more. I wanted you to see that you inspired me to write. Maybe even to read some of the stories that I’ve written. I realized I wanted to get to know you better.
He tried not to smile. He could see that she was smiling. As she worked, he wrote a reply.
Yes, you did inspire me to come out of hibernation. I love your work. To quote someone I admire, ‘it sings to me’. I became aware that part of the reason for writing was to find like souls. People who felt as I do and that inspired me. I too would like to get to know you better. I think we might have more in common than we expect.
He was sweating bullets as he posted. Worried that he’d said too much. Said the wrong thing. That he’d scare her off. He didn’t want to haul her off to bed in the next five minutes. He wanted to get to know her. If much later, it turned into something else, that would be cool, but that wasn’t the point. He looked at the clock. 15 more minutes before his computer locked up. He tried to look casual as he glanced over to where she stood tapping away at the keyboard. He refreshed his blog page.
Oh. You have made my day! You’re right. You can’t write about life if you aren’t living. However, I could write volumes about coffee. I don’t drink it, but I work in a cafe. I know that all my friends, including my co-workers think I’m nuts. However, I would like to know you better too. Ah well. Maybe some day. For now, I guess I’ll have to do with writing you comments on your blog. Or, maybe someday you’ll walk into the cafe and I can serve you a cup of coffee and we can sit down and chat.
He read that and found that his palms were sweaty. Should he just walk over there? Should he walk away? He wasn’t sure. Then again, he had driven down to the cafe like a madman. He’d sat here drinking coffee and writing away on the blog. The pinging noise of the computer snapped him out of his thoughts. He looked at the computer. TWO MINUTE WARNING the computer blinked. He hurried up and closed out of his blog. The computer went dark and he was left there with his cup of cold coffee wondering what in the hell to do.
He sat there taking a mental inventory. He wasn’t overweight. He wasn’t stupid. A beard, slightly long hair, glasses, a decent income and fairly intelligent. She also said that she wanted to get to know him. He sat there trying to decide as he swallowed the last of the cold coffee.
Cold coffee. Cold feet. He stood up because someone else wanted the computer. He walked over to the trash and dumped his cup. He took a deep breath, and started to leave when he felt a tug on his soul. He couldn’t leave without at least saying hello. If he didn’t, he’d never be able to come back. He took a deep breath and walked over to the counter. He stood there for a moment until she noticed him.
“Hi, can I help you?” she asked. Her voice was soft and warm.
“Um, in a way, you already have,” he said.
“What? I’m confused,” she said.
“It was something you said,” he said.
“You know, you are totally confusing me. When did I talk to you?” she said.
“Sorry. I’m not very good at things like this, ” he said. “You said that my writing ‘sings’ to you and I wanted to say thank you in person.” “There! I said it!” he thought.
She looked at him and blinked. “Wwwhat did you say?”
“You said that my writing ‘sings to my heart’, and I wanted to say thank you,” he said. This was more difficult than he expected.
“Oh… oh my,” she said. She looked around to see if anyone was watching or needed her. She turned back to him. “Adventurer?” she asked softly.
He smiled and nodded.
“I… I don’t know what to… oh my god! You just posted from here! Oh my god!” she said trying to whisper.
“Yeah. Um… if this is too awkward, I’ll go,”he said starting to think that he should have left.
“No. Here, come over here. Please, if you took all the effort to come find me, the least I could do is talk with you. It isn’t like you’re some psycho. Geeze, Just sit down and I’ll be right back,” she said.
He sat down, because he really didn’t want to leave. He wanted to talk and get to know her. He watched as she fluttered over to one of the other wait staff in the cafe. The guy looked at him, then at her, nodded and went back to cleaning the coffee machine.
She sat back down. “I can’t believe this is happening. What on earth made you come to the cafe?” she asked.
“Well, some smart ass librarian told me to look up my own information on the Internet, and I found a bunch of emails. I trashed most of them and realized that someone had written me 20 emails. I started to read them and realized I couldn’t stop. Then I followed a blog link and read all of the stories. I was thirsty for more, but…” he hesitated.
“I said I was taking a break. I was heartbroken that you’d disappeared. I thought that writing might bring you out, but…” she trailed off.
“I meant what I said today. I stopped and I was wrong. I read the About page on your blog, and then I saw your picture,” he said.
“Okay, so how did you know where to find me? I don’t have my address posted anywhere,” she said puzzled.
“I… um… I come to this coffee shop about 2-3 times a month. I recognized you,” he admitted.
She looked at him, blinked, smiled and then put her hand on his. “That means you live locally? All this time you’ve been right here?”
“Yeah. Are you mad at me?” he asked. He was so nervous.
“No. I’m very happy that you got ahold of a shitty librarian. I’m glad you had the courage to come into the coffee shop and very happy that you came up to me. I know that took a lot of courage,” she said.
“Yeah. I almost didn’t come. When I got here, I almost didn’t come in, and I almost left without saying a word,” he admitted.
“I’m so glad you changed your mind,” she said.
“Do you really want to get to know me? Or was that just fluff on the blog?” he asked.
“I meant what I said. Instead of coffee, would you like to go out to dinner?” she asked. “I’m off in 15 minutes.”
He smiled. “I think that would be a fine start to an adventure. My name is Jeff,” he said holding out his hand.
“Rose,” she said in return.
They went to a small restaurant in town. It didn’t matter what they ordered, they never really tasted it. Nor did they notice when the crowd thinned. They were lost in they other’s eyes, listening to the words spoken instead of written. Life had turned a page for both of them. They had found the missing piece of themselves.