Like most first dates, there were uncomfortable moments. Josh was reserved and rarely volunteered information about himself, which meant it was hard to get to know him. And while there was definitely a mutual physical attraction, there was a shyness in Josh that only seemed to fall away with the help of a few drinks. Still, I chalked that up to our still getting to know one another.
However, on my last night there, as we gazed at the city lights over the Inner Harbor, he turned to me and said, “You know this isn’t going to work, right?” Completely out of nowhere. I asked him to explain.
He said our personalities were too different — I’m outgoing, high-energy and emotional; he’s analytical, quiet and calm. I, both a romantic and a lawyer, attempted to argue my case — “Doesn’t love find a way?” — and he, the realistic, number-crunching one, pointed out the obvious practical hurdles. With the physical distance between us, there was no way to properly date or figure out how we would fit together.
My fairy tale seemingly shattered, I started to cry. He seemed sad too, though whether it was because of a mutual feeling of despair or simply uneasiness at my tears, I couldn’t tell. The next morning he drove me to the airport and I asked him to visit me in California. He gave a noncommittal answer. I left wondering if I would ever see him again.
Turns out, I would. A few weeks after my Maryland trip, Josh asked to visit me in California. I was thrilled. I convinced myself that he wanted to visit California to see if he could make a home here with me.
I planned a day trip to Napa. I borrowed my neighbor’s bike for Josh so we could tool around town together in true Californian style. I proudly showed him off to my friends, took him to my favorite local haunts, and tried my hardest to prove how great we could be together, the perfect Black power couple.