So, my former co-worker wrote a novel. I had no idea that he was writing, but we used to talk about how he loved crime novels, and we exchanged reading lists. I haven’t read it yet — I just downloaded the Kindle application for the iPhone so I could buy it.
His wife is throwing a book party for him, and I’ve had it on my calendar for more than a month. Excited to get out, I asked A. if he could babysit Thursday. He agreed, but he had a 10 p.m. flight out of DCA, so I had to be home no later than 8:15. I put the baby down to bed at 6:45, and ran to the bathroom to get gussied up: a new peach tank top, black skirt, dangly silver and black earrings. I even ran a curling iron through my hair and dusted on eye shadow.
I gave A. a kiss and walked out into the evening. I chatted with S. along the way. “I’m so happy you’re getting out!” she said. “Me too!” I beamed. I was excited to see former coworkers, too.
When I reached the gallery, sweating slightly in the summer heat, I pressed the buzzer.
“Hello?” said a young woman.
“Hi, I’m here for K.D. Calamur’s book party,” I said.
“I’m here for K.D. Calamur’s book party?”
“Ohhh,” she said slowly. “That’s next week. You have the wrong date.”
“Oh nooo,” I said.
“Yeah, I’m sorry I didn’t hear you the first time. Yeah, that’s on the 26th.”
I blushed, standing on the street, as people milled around me, stepping into neighboring bars.
“OK, thank you!” I said cheerily.
Then, not sure what to do with myself, I checked the calendar on my phone. There, on the 19th: book party. I recorded the (wrong) date before C. was sleeping regularly through the night.
I walked home, feeling dejected — noticing groups of people laughing and drinking pints at the beer garden on 14th Street. So, naturally, I decided on some retail and food therapy combined: goat cheese and crackers from Cork Market. I planned to eat it with some honey that A.’s mom gave us a while ago.
When I got home, A. looked confused. I hung my head.
“I had the wrong date.”
“Oh,” he said sympathetically. “Well, you still have 45 minutes.”
So I ran upstairs, changed quickly into my running clothes, filled up my water and ran out the door for a stress-relieving run in Rock Creek. And now, as I see it, I have something to look forward to.