One night last week, B and I made plans to travel to a small town somewhere near the small town I live in to see one of his favorite local bands. This translated into a fun and romantic trip, holding hands, flying down a dirt road and watching the corn and beans roll past the windows. The kind of trip that included directions like "turn left at the 3rd stop sign, go straight until you see the spotted pig against the fence, then hang a right."
It was comfortably warm with a breeze that night. I wore my favorite holey jeans, a fitted tee, sunglasses and flip flops.
We parked, intertwined our fingers, and walked into the place. The setting sun cast yellow light across the ground as we walked in. It was a little bar in the middle of nowhere. We bought some drink tickets and went out back. There was a BBQ with all the fixins and a folding stage.
A stench of swine (also known as the smell of money if you're anywhere near Iowa, which we were).
Live music. Neil Diamond. Jimmy Buffett. Johnny Cash. Even a song I haven't heard in years entitled, "Who The %#$@ Is Alice?" (yes, Lulu, I mourned.) We whooped and hollered and cheered.
After B's local band left the stage, the main act came on. It was past dusk and we were a few drinks in. B's best friend and his girlfriend had joined us and we were ready to dance.
In the gravel.
With the stench of swine swirling about our nostrils. By the end of the night I found out that Malibu kind of erases the smell of pig ass. Just so you know.
My baby danced with me. He swirled me all around. He JUMPED with me. They played so many of the songs that we love: Fishin' In The Dark. More Neil. Johnny Cash. There we were, jumping and laughing and kissing - all with little pebbles in my flip flops.
Literally one of those amazing, warm, heady moments I will never forget. One where we were there, under God's enormously beautiful, Midwestern starry sky, held tight in each others' arms.
B and I talked the whole night long. Flirted just like we always have. Talked about our plans. Smiled. Didn't let go of each other. Stared into each others' eyes and said out loud all the things that most people are too afraid to say or don't say often enough.
The sun went down and the music went up. More folks whooped and hollered and kicked and sang. It was my first 'street dance' experience - and it was freaking awesome. Hometown. Small. REAL.
One of our best dates ever. EVER.
And Dear B: Night before last you told me that you loved that I don't like Red Vines. (I hope you'll still take me to the movies; I'll buy the Twizzlers.) You also told me that you loved how I cook and how I switched to Tide detergent (just to smell you all the time). I love the way you say 'logistics' and how you glance at me sideways. I love how one of us always plays Neil when the other needs to hear it - without even asking. I love your long toes and how much you love Shark Week, just like me. Every moment is sweeter because you're in it. Here's to grey walls, Babe.