14 Going On 40

SUMMARY: A gathering of summer outing committee members over sushi and grilled Korean BBQ, then boys + girl laugh night over frappes and iced coffee, and a brief stay at the bar with a fun, albeit older eligible guy.

When I met him, my already lowered expectations went on a nosedive. The guy was small-frame, older, and I felt manlier than him. I’d say, in touch with his feminine, sensitive side. I promptly ignored him. But when I sat on the bench and mindlessly looked upon his back, I swear I heard my heart beating harder.

During our stay at the coffee shop, they kept taking off my eyeglasses and telling me hilarious anecdotes with officemates whose identities were hidden in codenames like Boy No-English, Boy Negro, etc. It was noticeable that he was just so quietly typing on his iPhone.

When we had to bid goodbye, the guys insisted that he give me a ride home. But he also had to pass by a bar as his friend was there. I had to tag along.

Relished on the loud party beats that I usually listened to while timekeeping, downing on rhum cola and lime alcomix, with them coaxing me to dance. The other two left in pursuit of hot dates or good fun, leaving me with this guy. We had small talk for 2 hours and with other guys starting to take notice of the only girl who still wears glasses instead of contact lenses, he wrapped an arm on my waist and I leaned on him. Such a clean, shaven scent. Gentle arm with strength within. And he brought me home in his car, and on the way I felt his uneasiness.

When we stopped, I held his hand and expressed my appreciation. He was utterly surprised.

Days passed and we communicated via email, SMS and calls. I fell in love with the gentleness of his
voice, with his funny antics, and his seemingly open-mindedness. Until I had to admit to one senior friend that I might have fallen for him.

This friend of mine suddenly wanted to talk to me on the office pantry. I met not a jolly man and team leader who can command respect with his demeanor, but a very big boy who ate with puffy eyes while admitting to me the real age of the man he wanted me to meet.

The balloon of utter happiness popped out by the stark truth.

And I was left alone again.

Looking back, if not for societal taboos I would have continued dating him. But it seemed that he was either not interested or was intentionally avoiding contact.

And I was reminded of the “Highschool Life” and “13 Going On 30”

Well, “14 Going On 40” is more accurate.

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