Ben was sitting on the stone bench in front of Au Bon Pan, reading a book. He look up and smiled. I looked down and covered my grinning face with my hands.
He was here. He is gone.
All day Friday things were strange. I was getting weird, one-line emails every hour or so from Ben. His cell phone was off. At the end of the day, my editor ran over to my desk and said, "I can't let you go home! I wanna make sure you're paid for all of your hours." I just smiled and nodded, knowing I'm only schedule to work until 5:30 Fridays. I chalked that comment and the giggling in her office to temporary insanity.
During the drive home, Candice suddenly insisted that we stop for a cookie at the Student Center, practically kidnapping me. When we entered Au Bon Pan, she said she was going to the bathroom, but was back 10 seconds later, sayng she had to show me something.
And it was him. "Surprise! Happy Birthday."
We went to restaurants, sweated in the humid 80-degree heat, walked through campus, explored Princeton, sat on the beach at Ocean Grove, had brunch with Mom and Laura, hit the Targum party and a packed fiesta at Leslie's house.
It was comfortable and sweet and wonderful...