BY FRANCISCO MACIEL
That Saturday morning was our first weekend together in the apartment. It was a strange feeling waking up and walking out of my room to her, but seeing her sitting there at the kitchen table, eating a bowl of cheerios felt so natural. Her ‘good mornings’ were always so sweet. They always brightened up my days, and made me wonder about what we’d be like as a couple. The vase with roses from her boyfriend on the table cut those thoughts short. After a week of living together and having to sit on the floor every time we watched tv, we both agreed we needed a couch. Desperately. After eating breakfast, showering and getting ready we left to go find a couch for the apartment.
I wasn’t a fan of those big-box stores, I’m a bit of a hippie/hipster, so my first choice was to go to Queen Street West. I had always heard of the cool furniture stores, and I figured we could probably find something cheap and interesting there. I didn’t want to just get any old couch from The Brick or Leons.
Near Bathurst we jumped into the first store. We wanted it all. We talked about how things would look in the apartment. She sat down on a particularly comfortable couch, I sat beside her and put my arm around her. We pretended to be sitting at home watching Netflix or any old movie. She had this cute reaction to things way out of her bounds. She’d say, “oh hell no!” with her sweet Latin American accent it’d always sound cute.
Spending time with her was always a pleasure. She had this curiosity about me that made me feel wanted, made me feel unique. I loved the way that no matter how detailed I told her a story, at the end she’d always say “and?….” as if to say, “that’s not enough, I want to know more”. Conversation always flowed easily with her, and that day was especially easy.
So we got to walking west on Queen Street. We asked each other all kinds of questions. She told me what life in Venezuela had been like. Her family was well off there, and she hadn’t been unhappy but since she was younger her dream had been to move away from Venezuela. This led into her three goals in life: to live in a lot of places, get married and have kids, and lastly to own her own business. I loved that. Someone who had their goals outlined perfectly. When she asked me what my goals were, I didn’t really have a clear answer. This bothered her, but I could never give her a clear answer. I have never been sure of what I want for the future, I just know what I want in the moment. And in that moment I was just glad to be with her.
Every furniture store we went into was either out of our price range or the complete opposite of our style. This pushed us deeper into conversation, and with our goal of finding a sofa forgotten, this afternoon turned into a quasi-date.
Getting to know her was like unwrapping a Christmas present. I had known of her for so long, had imagined what she was like, what music she listened to, her likes and dislikes. Now I was actually getting to know her, I got to unwrap the present that was Veronica and like most Christmas presents she was so much better than I had ever imagined. She liked country music, but she was sweet, and fiercely independent. She listened to a weird array of pop, rock, and country. She liked the word “chicken” but hated the taste and smell of the actual thing.
We ended up stopping at a fish and chips shop near Trinity Bellwoods, and there I learned she didn’t like fish, but she liked chips! So I ordered a fish and chips, knowing I’d have to sacrifice some chips to her. While we were waiting for the food, a pregnant woman came in and ordered food. This brought our conversation to what having kids would be like, and she confessed to me she really wants to get pregnant. Not right now, of course, but she said she can’t wait to have kids. She hopes once she gets pregnant she’ll be like one of those women who don’t look pregnant except for the fact that they have a huge belly.
On the subway home, we ended up playing a little game. We had to pick someone on the subway that we’d like to have as a boyfriend/girlfriend, and coming up with a story as to who they are based on how they looked and why we want them as a partner. The only thing I could think during this game was that I wanted to pick her.