Sure, I woke up at 8 o'clock this morning, but the day never begins there. Around noon, I finally tore myself away from tumblr and showered.
Self-conscious about lingering at my workplace, I decided to go through our drive-thru to get my iced tea. Josh and Anthony taunted me over the speaker, and then they threw EVERYTHING into my car when I got to the window. I winced at the rain of change - all of which is still littered on the driver's side of my car, btw.
On the other side of the parking lot is the $5bookstore, one of the local business thriving over the loss of Borders. And half their staff are former Borders employees - which means I know them all. I settled into a corner and began writing that damned essay.
After accomplishing an outline and the first two solid paragraphs, my bladder and stomach simultaneously decided that relief and snack time were in order. There are no public bathrooms in the $5bookstore. There is internet. There are comfy chairs. There are millions of books. There is no where to pee. And no coffee and munchies. Back to the Sbux I went.
You know you are loved when you are greeted with, "What are you still doing here?! Go away!!"
"Shaddap! I just need to pee!" was the reply because it fits within perfectly professional behavior.
I suddenly felt like a regular again, that I had home to look forward to. That there's a me-shaped hole I can fit into wherever I go. I recreated my Borders, except that to get to coffee and a bathroom, I had to walk two minutes across a busy parking lot.
I'm still not finished with my essay at this point. Loaded with snacks and coffee, I return to the bookstore and give Sam and Kevin their coffee. Sam comments on my Harry Potter paraphernalia - I've got on Kathryn's Hufflepuff hat and my cardigan with its sewn-on Hufflepuff badge, and she starts to tear up about how the series is over. I playfully scold her for making me cry. Then I settle back into my corner. Kevin comments about how a girl with a hat just like mine was sitting there when he came in for his shift. I had to reassure him that it was me.
Closing time for the bookstore finds me with a full bladder again. I'm back at Starbucks, sitting with a store regular and her friend, still working on my essay. Nas gives me a double-take but shrugs off my third appearance at the store. Then again, he wasn't here when I first arrived. And, damn him, he tags me first this time.
I am happy.
On the edge of finishing my essay, Powers calls. He's done at work and will be in Simi soon. Soon is enough time to bullshit another 300 words. Soon was enough to meet new friends and greet familiar faces. I've found home.
Dinner was at Love Sushi. I'm not lonely as I wait ten minutes for Powers. I talk to the chefs and the waiters - we all know each other now. They wish me happy birthday again. I need to take everyone there for their birthdays. It cannot be explained, what they do, it must be experienced.
I'm happy and I'm home. And Powers is there, even though he's dog-tired. And I'm still in love with him, but I'm still so glad he's my very best friend. It's easier this time around. I've come around to the concept of balancing our friendship and my crush. It's hard to explain. The only thing I can call it is home, and comfort.
It's undefinable, this happiness. It's contentment. It's a day in the life of a Hobbit.