Friday, May 18, 2018

then again

"Do you think they'll ever get married?" The question bugged Effy long after she overheard Holly ask Natalie that night at the housewarming party (Effy had for their best friend from college.)

Effy tried her best to let it go, but it lingered in the quietness of her lonely nights without Jamie who was an intern at the hospital. She knew not to bug him about it. Still, she knew his mother disliked her and she was certain he would always do what his mother told him.

She went on to looked at her gardening on the little balcony. The tomatoes looked to be growing and the peppers too. It was good to see something grow. At least, she wasn't worried about work, wondering if she'd ruffled anyone's ego.

It was true, maybe her life was on eggshells and she didn't want to admit it. Deep down, she knew she couldn't please everyone, but maybe she was at the point of not even wanting to please anyone.

A knock came to her door. It was Joon, who was alone. He had a big bowl with mushy dough.

"Does this look right to you?" He needed her expertise. He was making a rhubarb pie for Natalie while Natalie was out with Holly at a movie. He'd added more flour but it was wrong. He was sure.

She thought they could start over. She'd make the crust in her food processor. He didn't have one.

"How nice of you, to make strawberry rhubarb pie." She smiled.

"Oh, she doesn't like strawberries." He told Effy she was allergic to them. "But she likes rhubarb."

Effy smiled as she handed over a fresh ball of dough in plastic wrap.

He gritted a smile, telling her he didn't trust himself making the pie. He made her laugh. She went down the hall with him to his place. She promised she would only watch. After all, she rarely ever baked a pie.

She showed him how to roll out the dough with wax paper. She helped him with the filling too. He'd at least chopped up the rhubarb.

"So how's apartment life?" She asked after they got the pie in the oven.

"All right." He did his best to smile.

"Are you sure?" Effy looked at him as if he could be honest with her.

"I guess it could be better." He admitted Natalie wasn't the best cook in the world, but that wasn't really the problem. "I just can't." He winced as if he shouldn't tell her things like this. "Its all my fault." He finally said and crossed his arms.

"You know how it is." She told him. "You see your friends in relationships and then you envy them. Why isn't it like that for me?" She told him a lot of times, we only see what we want to see. "We're all struggling in our relationships. Sure, you'll see some who really know how to make you feel, you're not in love enough. But what do they really know? We just have to enjoy the little things."

Joon nodded.

"I mean, I'm doubtful Jamie and I will get married." She told Joon that Jamie's mother didn't like her.

"How could she not like you?" Joon shook his head. "You're so nice." He told her she was the happiest person on the library staff.

"I don't think she wants to know me," Effy told him she was OK with that. Still, it felt it was a matter of time. She couldn't help to think what life would be like without Jamie. Of course, he was so busy. He didn't have time for, after all.

At least, she knew she'd stay in her apartment. She could afford it, solo. Yet, she didn't want to break up with him. This was the life she knew.

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