The flight originated in New York. I was there for business, and my girlfriend Jessi is going to pick me up 30 minutes. Just enough time to deplane, grab an espresso, and get my bag.
As we pull into the gate, I try to remember what Jessi looks like, but I draw a blank. I can’t picture her, and I can’t even remember what color her hair or eyes are. I pull my phone out to look at her picture, but it’s dead since it fell into a puddle outside the hotel.
We have been dating 2 years.
I walk off the Jetway and think to myself that maybe Jessi is not even my girlfriend, that maybe I imagined her. And if she is at the airport, it could very well be to pick up someone else. Her new boyfriend? Her real boyfriend?
I walk into Starbucks, buy an espresso, and look around for power. A tall, awkward lady in an floppy orange hat is hogging both the sockets. I approach and ask permission to use one. She ignores me. I speak up, and ask again. She looks away and laughs into her phone mumbling something about feeling a chill.
I pull my laptop out, but the battery is spent, and it needs a total reboot. I walk over to the plug, remove the cord connected to the lady’s phone, and plug in my computer. She continues her conversation and starts filing her nails.
The computer reboots, but right in the middle, I hear a crunch and the screen turns blue. Not good.
What the fuck does Jessi look like?
For a second, I consider the possibility that I am a ghost or spirit or maybe we landed in an alternative universe, but then I remember the espresso, and how the cute Barrista told me a funny joke, and how my CC was approved.
Credit cards aren’t normally approved in alternative universes, are they?
Just then, the tall lady screams into her phone, waves her arm, and literally launches coffee all over me, burning my arm and making me wince. I realize I’m definitely not a ghost.
The lady starts crying, so I wipe myself off, grab my computer bag, and head down to baggage claim.
Will Jessi remember what I look like?
I grab my bag from the turnstile and walk out to the street. She’s picking me up, but I can’t remember how I know that, what kind of car she has, or if she was going to park.
We planned this pickup, she and I, but I can’t recall when, or even the last time we spoke. And I still can’t remember what she looks like.
And then, I get a flash... blond hair, blue eyes. The pieces of my girlfriend start falling into place, her nose, her chin, her teeth, her butt.
I feel a tap on my shoulder, and before I can turn around...
“Hey Tiger, guess who?