The city is a strange place before 6 a.m. on a weekend. Nearly-deserted, save for the handful of other people with a really good reason to be out of bed while the college- and near-college-aged two-thirds of the city sleep off the night before. I am not heading to Downtown Crossing for a run, however, I’m heading there for a meeting.
I am also tired.
I trudge through Downtown Crossing, noticing most doorways to the locked stores are occupied by homeless people. Likely something I miss later in the day, when they have been woken and moved on. By the the end of the meeting, the stores are starting to open, and the streets are filling with tourists. I am still a few cups of tea shy of actual consciousness, however.
On the train ride home, I learn that I don’t have a shift at my one job. I was aiming to get a shift in at the other, but they don’t need me when I call either. I am also slated for a run, so this means I can get a nap in before going on my date in the evening.
It’s nearly 2 p.m. The weather is the closest Boston has had to spring thus far this year. Warm, sunny, a wonderful day to be running. I am out the door and running before my body has finished kicking off the shrouds of the nap. The warm-up walk feels good, and gets me awake again before I even start running. I hit the reservoir, to make my first full, half-hour run in a few weeks. The wind gently pushes me along. I am alone for most of the reservoir, see a few other runners jogging along the sidewalk.
By the time I hit Cleveland Circle, I am still feeling pretty glorious about the weather and the nearly-finished run. It feels like it’s in the bag. I wander past one of my favorite pizza places, The Real Deal, and through a group of three people who seem to be considering it as a dining option.
“Hey, this place has pizza,” the male of the group, dressed in a pink polo, remarks.
I am next to him, and toss back, “Yeah. Really good pizza.”
He and his companions laugh. I smile, but don’t look back. I like to believe they took my advice.
Once home, I start preening myself for said date. While I have been seeing the girl in question for a few weeks, this is the first time we have gone on an actual, organized, planned date. I shave, shower, dress up nice, and buy flowers because, if I could give myself one piece of dating advice, it would be this: When you have an opportunity to make someone feel special, take it.
Actually, that’s good advice for anywhere in life.
The date went really well.