August 19, 2015 – Shakespeare Pond at Central Park
There was unfinished business here, and now that I was back in New York, I had to go back to the spot, just to remember that goodbye one last time, to gather my thoughts on what I’d learned from things with the Farmer. I walked to the park alone, retraced my steps to find my way back to where we were three long months earlier, when I decided to give dating a try in New York.
May 8, 2015 – The Goodbye
I remember the moments like yesterday. My phone was dead, so I was officially off the grid and already late in getting back to Aaron at the apartment, before we met up with good friends from back home for one last hurrah before I took a 6am flight to Asheville, NC. I wasn’t planning to sleep tonight. They say it’s the City that Never Sleeps, and what better time to join its ranks?
I wasn’t supposed to be at the Park this long, but there was no way I could leave without saying goodbye. We’d known each other for just a few weeks- a couple excursions in Manhattan and Brooklyn – but there was something unusual about him, some measure of depth, soulfulness that you just don’t encounter every day, that leaves you wanting more.
There I am, at the edge of Central Park in the dark, looking into the Farmer’s eyes as we say goodbye and I tell him how much it scares me to move forward not knowing where this Sabbatical will lead.
He says something about having faith in the journey, in life and God to provide the way. Most anyone who does something of deep meaning has a season of wandering, and they come out of it not only more ready for what’s next, their very destination is altered by the wandering. And yet, he warns that there are some things in life we just can’t run away from, that no amount of novelty or exploration or adventuring will resolve, deep things will follow us from place to place until we deal with them head-on. He doesn’t know what these are for me, but I’m starting to get an idea.
Then he smiles, kisses my forehead, and says: “You’re the best thing to come out of Tinder for me. Keep me updated on what’s going on in your life.”
The compliment is bizarre and sweet, just like the whole experience of meeting perfect strangers in the city has been. It’s also the last thing he says to me.
To think that whatever fleeting, unexpected thing this was started from a discussion on food composting…