How she wished she had someone to share it with. Elise had tried hard for years to find someone. Dating sites, church groups, happy hours, taking a bus to work, volunteering, taking classes, joining a gym, even becoming a “regular” at a coffee shop. But nothing worked. Now 35, Elise was still single.
Not that she heard her “biological clock ticking,” though she would welcome being a mother. But what she really wanted was a lover. Not for the sex, although she would welcome that too. But for the intimacy, someone with whom she could share her heart and whose heart she might hold dear.
Elise hadn’t found Mr. Right, but she kept her eyes open for any contenders. That’s partly why she ordered pizzas on Friday nights. Maybe her lover would appear in the form of a dashing pizza delivery guy. Alas, tonight’s potential candidate wasn’t shaving yet.
Elise poured another glass of wine, grabbed two slices of pizza and settled in for a movie. What to watch tonight? She’d seen every rom-com on Netflix and couldn't take another one anyway. She picked a documentary about five communities where people live extraordinarily long and vibrant lives. But she fell asleep before it was over.
The following morning, Elise went to a nearby coffee shop where she’d become a regular. On Saturdays, she always got there early, when it wasn’t crowded yet. She usually picked a small table in the corner from which she could see all the other customers. All the other prospects.
But by the end of every Saturday morning, Elise was one of the last customers left, and she hadn't met or even spotted any prospects. Maybe she’d seen too many rom-coms, but she kept expecting some handsome, or even not-so-handsome, guy to approach her table and say, “Would you mind some company?”
This Saturday, though, she’d slept in. Maybe it was that third glass of wine. At any rate, she didn’t get to the coffee shop until mid-morning. By then, the place was packed.
Elise had never gotten a coffee to go but, standing in the long line, she considered it. She didn’t see an open table. Nor did she see any tables where cute guys were sitting alone.
But maybe the early morning coffee drinkers would be leaving soon. She went ahead and ordered her usual latte in a ceramic mug.
By the time it was ready, though, the place was still full. Standing near the door, she looked around, hoping someone would leave but ready to pour her latte into a paper cup.
“You’re welcome to share my table,” someone said.
Elise looked over. Right next to her stood a 30-something man with broad shoulders and a kind face. He was standing alone at a tall table with no chairs. Elise hadn't even noticed that table before.