Sassafras Tea

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It was the day after the carnival. I was drinking a sassafras tea. I enjoy them from time to time. My friend always tells me that nobody purposefully drinks sassafras tea. I shrugged, not too concerned with what she thought about it. I was listening to her go on and on about some controversy she was dealing with at work. Some mumble jumble about insurance policies. I wasn’t really that interested, instead I found myself watching the men cleaning up the trash from yesterday’s festivities. My brain drifted off to the oxidation process of the metal and how safe the rides actually were for the kids.
It was a balmy July afternoon. I was quite depressed from a recent break up, which is why I agreed to go out with my friend to begin with. I knew I needed a distraction. I had caught my boyfriend in bed with my sister. The awkward feeling of standing there witnessing such an act haunted my brain at random moments. Truth be told, I didn’t know who to be angrier with- her or him. She was my sister, she should know better, but admittedly, she has always been quite juvenile- that came as no surprise. My boyfriend should have also known better- however, men are pigs, right?
I guess it didn’t matter. The point remains that I was hurt, so I simply left without saying a word. My heart was sprained or possibly broken, but I knew I’d survive. Fortunately, I’m glad I didn’t agree to move in with him. He had asked me to only weeks before. I couldn’t wrap my brain around the concept, but I was mature enough to know that not all things are explainable. Apparently, I wear a strong mask. I don’t enjoy the pain of vulnerability.
I took a bite out of my apple. I felt the crisp tartness on my tongue and I found myself smiling. I knew things would look up for me sooner or later. It’s the problems and pain that bring forth peace and appreciation. I took a deep breath and another sip of my tea. I twirled the umbrella between my fingers absentmindedly.
I heard the music in the background. Absentmindedly I looked for the source when my friend pointed out the piano bar. I nodded and agreed, only because I was trying to keep my mind off things. We walked in to see the man jamming on the keys. He and I locked eyes and instantly my stomach tightened. He was beautiful.
I moved with the music. Periodically, he would smile at me and me him. There was an invisible line that the universe set up connecting us, that only we could feel. A power, or energy source brought us together in this random place at this random time. The afternoon turned to evening and I felt light on my feet. My friend was sitting down drinking a lemonade, tolerating me refusing to leave, due to her knowledge of the pain I had been in. Truth is, the pain left me as soon as I entered the piano bar. I felt magical.
That’s when I heard his strange request. I had come to the realization that the chain of events had to happen in order for this moment to exist. I watched, giggling, as the waiter handed him a sassafras tea.