(I have made it a goal to recount our entire story together. I am not quite caught up with things yet but here is a little sneak peak of it. This part is when Jordan and I reunited after three and half years of dating other people! It’s not grammatically correct (like all of my writing ha) but it is just the raw simple unfiltered truth of us. hope ya enjoy)
CHAPTER ONE: A PLEASANT SUPRISE
It was early summer, June 11 2009; I was driving down to San Marcos, CA for my weekly lunch with Nate. As I passed the Fallbrook exit on the 15 Fwy my heart skipped a beat. It wasn’t really uncommon though; every time I passed that exit I was 17 again. The flashback of my first love hit my soul like an earthquake. I couldn’t help but get a crooked grin just remembering that summer. Late night drives. Making out in the car. Feeling a fire burn in my soul like never before. That 15 freeway will forever haunt me with the memories of Jordan Patrick Coté.
June 11 was a different day, a new day. There must have been something in the air cause after seeing the word Fallbrook I had an irresistible urge to see if he was going to be at the Macaroni Grill serving for lunch. Nate and I were going to lunch anyways, why not go somewhere with great service! I don’t know exactly came over me but it was no longer something I could control. So I texted Amber (his little sis) to get Jordan’s number (of all people!), which led to talking to him…. which turned into him convincing me to come over and watch a Laker’s game at his house. I don’t even know anything about basketball nor do I ever watch it; but then again Jordan Coté never takes no for an answer and always gets me to agree to his crazy plans.
I set the phone down, put both hands on the wheel staring down the freeway asking myself what the heck just happened?! Did I really just agree to this? I begin to laugh hysterically, first in awe, and then it continued into a nervous breakdown. What are we even going to talk about? It’s been almost four years, what is there to say? Where do we even begin? I didn’t know whether to shout with joy, cry, and laugh, or freak out…. My stomach dropped. My heart was pounding in my chest.
The drive from Nate’s house to San Elijo was only 15 minutes but they felt so long. Each minute was teasing me. Isn’t this what I always wanted? ….. And can someone please pull the herd of elephants from stomach. The second I pulled up I really almost threw up. Shaky, shut down, defenses high, that’s how I presented myself after all this time. Walking into the house together we met up with Justin, the best friend who was trained to hate me for years. Talk about tension. Someone could have cut the air with a knife. Awkward minutes passed as we watched the game, Justin had to leave so it was just Jord and I. Within minutes I found myself resting my head on a pillow that was on his leg. I guess time; even lots of time can’t change all things. Within the hour and the end of the game we grabbed some beers and headed down to the Oceanside Pier. Funny choice on his part because that was the place of our first date in high school. This time though we hid underneath on the rocks, drinking beer and staring into the ocean. As the waves crashed on the rocks they began to break down the walls around my heart. Three hours later we put everything out on the line. I don’t think two people could have been more honest. Every success, failure, joy, triumph, shortcoming, failure, belief, passion, and dream. Within five hours of reuniting I was truly, madly and deeply in love (again). In every honest answer he gave me my heart began to beat more rapidly… with every secret revealed and every truth I confessed the ice in my soul melted down. A weight was slowly lifting off my shoulder. We drove home in silence, hugged and said goodbye. There was no definite next time. No guarantee of a phone call later. That night was over before I knew it. I was almost more baffled driving back then I was on the way there. What now?
Such a sweet and perfect reunion, at least for us. Unexpected, spontaneous, walking right through memory lane.
CHAPTER TWO: THIRD TIME’S THE CHARM
The moments of silence and questioning didn’t last long. Only a few minutes later I was reassured with texts that I wasn’t the only one who had a good night. And then I received this…6/12/09 1:45am
JP- “I understand that I just came back into your life and for me to expect you to trust me is unrealistic so it’s ok you were quiet.”
JL- “ha-ha my brain is going a million miles an hour and I feel like there is a million things to tell you but the words would not come out.”
JP- “well then we will have to find a time when they do”
JL- “life is crazy Jord. Who would have thought?”
JP-“that’s why you never want to burn bridges. Thank you for being a fire retardant”
JL-“k I am gonna drive up the hill now. Sleep sweet crazy. Thanks for tonight.”
JP-“you too, thank you for a great night as well. Text me when you get home”
And this was the beginning, the beginning of the end. I don’t think another six hours went by without a call or text. We made a pact that week, “Anything and everything, the world is our playground.” Only days after this I receive this text:
JP-“ok bare with me I might have a plan. Well I am gonna try to get my Wednesday (shift) covered and then if you want you can come out (to Joshua Tree) and meet me there on Tuesday night. I’ll just have them leave me behind and we can spend the night there and then you can take me back, spend the night at my casa and then we can do the museums, and sushi. That is a complex plan I just came up with. But please if you don’t feel like doing it let me know it was just an idea”
I started laughing out loud as I read this lying on bed. I couldn’t even fathom what was happening. But before I could tell him yes I was already planning on what I was going to wear! Had to look good cause who knows what could happen! It had only been a couple of days since I last saw him and I was counting down the minutes until Joshua Tree.
CHAPTER THREE: PUSHING MY LIMITS
JL- K gotta get back to my wonderful 8-5pm job….I definitely need some adventure in my life.
JP- As far as the 8-5 job goes, talk is cheap remember? Just a whole lot of bull shit comin out of our mouths. If you want change take a risk and make it happen.
JL- You just gotta find the right opportunity
JP- Sometimes if you wait to find it it will never come. You gotta make it happen. Regardless of opportunities. You gotta make your own opportunities. Move away and take a working vacation for a couple of months. Not with in n out. School will always be there and in n out will always take you back. You’re 21 don’t get sucked into this capitalistic, materialistic, dream crushing black hole that is America. You can always come back. But if you never move forward you will never see what other opportunities are out there for you. You could never say you live your life to the fullest. Just a bit of light motivation for you J
JL- How do you always do that?
JL- Make my head hurt
JP- haha, Sorry I don’t mean to make your head hurt I just want you to be happy. And I know you’re looking for something and I honestly think that is how you will find it.
JP- I think you should put in your 2 weeks tomorrow and sell your truck and go on an adventure.
JL- Where? I want to but not by myself!? Someone will shove me in the trunk of their car.
JP- haha. Now that sounds like an adventure. Ya adventures are better with people. So you can either bring someone or meet people along the way.
JL- Ya I will have to find someone to go with and then meet people along the way.. That will have to be the next goal.
Jp- Well I am all about adventures so you will have to keep me in mind!
Jl- Oh really?!? Let’s just go then! Haha
Jp- I am going I just have to wait until my sister thing is over. So I decided that you need a hobby. You need to have a way that you artistically release yourself, even if you’re not good at it. Just something that allows you to be free and happy.
Jl- You say all these things.. But I don’t know how or what to do to make any of it happen. Haha I agree with most of everything but it all feels so far.
Jp-It starts with a risk and builds to dream fulfillment.
Jl- this is how I feel…. Work with me on this one cause I don’t how else to explain it. In movies there are usually three main types of characters, a bad guy, the main character and then the supporting character. You are talking to me like I am the main one.. The star.. The one that does all these crazy things. But that’s not me, I am the supporting one. The one in the background but is completely necessary. You ask me what I am waiting for? Just gotta find the right movie to jump into.
Jp- Well you are the one that chooses to put yourself into a classification. If you want to be something else you can but you if you are content with being a support, which is completely necessary, than that is fine too. Just find something that you truly believe in and support it. You can be a support and still do crazy things.
Jl- For sure. Its what I was made to do. Its what I love to do. Its what brings joy, just gotta find it that’s all.
Jp- You just have to find something crazy to believe in with all of your heart.
Jl- That’s where I am at
Jp- Well in the mean time move to Hawaii in august. Take a working vacation and slow down your way of life so you can actually think and be free from f’d up fast pace America.
Jl- (i’m) scheduled and planned. I don’t even know what the other side of that looks like. Haha
Jp- Then find out be spontaneous. If you feel like doing something do it. Everyday there are a thousand opportunities to be spontaneous.
Jl-haah my brain so does not work like this. My heart does but not brain. We are friends so you gotta help me with this.
Jp But that is why I am moving over there to just change my life into a more relaxed version. Also to feel how it is to be away from my family for extended periods of time.
Jl- haha weird… we are friends. Sorry just had a moment again. Where the hell have you been all this time?!
Jp- consumed by the dramatic whirlwind that is Brittany
Jl- haha Shit happens! Just makes me laugh, cause even four years feels like nothing now. Not much has changed. So pretty much you’re saying just get on a plane on go huh?
Jp- Ya why not. Do you want to go to Hawaii cause I can talk to my friends out there and see what I can put together?
Jp- Ya I will call them right now.
Jp- Well you are all set up in Hawaii in august if you want to go. Rent would be not very much a couple hundred a month. Jobs are super easy to find right now and they won’t charge until your find one.
Jl- Are you being for real?
Jp- Ya. Just talked to them.
CHAPTER FOUR: ENDLESS POSSIBILITIES
It’s been four years; four long years of a distance that at times seemed unbearable. Feelings, thoughts, and memories that I could not forget haunted me the entire drive out to the desert, the desert where the possibilities were endless. Unsure, scared, nervous and tired from a long week at work there is no way to describe all that was going through my head. But you only live once, and no matter what happened the risk was more than worth it. Contemplating what to expect, how I should act, conversations that should or should not be said, I sat eagerly awaiting all that was to come. Pulling up, unloading, the nerves only grew worse. My body was trembling and my heart was racing. From a distance I heard a whistle, looking up and watching him walk across the campground everything in my head disappeared. Nothing really mattered except the fact that I was there. And being there was more than I could ask for.
It’s funny that even after all that time we still didn’t have trouble finding words to say. Even the silence felt comfortable. The first hike, we went walking across the desert side by side, just wandering. We found a boulder to climb, reaching the top we sat amazed by the beauty that surrounded us. Who could make all of this? We have a good God, sitting there above it all made that fact undeniable. We barely said anything to each other. Just sat peacefully in good company. The sun began to set bringing a light breeze; it was time to get the fire started. Using nothing but true mountain skills we kindled up a blazing fire from only a few small red coals. The conversation continued, effortless and easy. Laughter came freely. Still somehow shocked that we were here together, we soaked it all in. There was no denying that somehow we had a connection that could not be easily replicated.
Time for a midnight stroll, the destination did not matter. We traveled by the minute light from the moon hidden by clouds. Eased by a few drinks, and time spent, we walked closer together. Without any question or explanation, being together was just fine. Uncertain of how we managed to make it back to camp we made it just in time to keep the fire going. I pulled out some blankets and laid them on the dirt close to the fire. He eased his body back into the bench, resting and staring into the flames. I sat next to him and as the time passed the embers grew hotter and so did the fire in my soul. The breeze was cool and I began to feel the night air. I snuck into his lap and the second he put his arms around my body, nothing mattered anymore. It was over. We both let out a long sigh of relief. Everything was right. As we climbed into the bed for the evening there was no questioning, we laid close holding on to each other, holding on to the moment. It didn’t matter how or why or what it meant, it just was, and that was fine. Sleep came easily.
Dawn breaking and the air crisp, the fire needed to be rekindled. With sleep still upon us he managed to build up the fire once more and bring warmth to the morning chill. Crawling back into the blankets sleep fell upon us again. The sun was rising and so was I. Time to get up, to a new day, full of new life, new hope and new adventure. I was anxious. A solo hike and quiet moment on a boulder made me realize only one thing. This, this was exactly what I needed right now; to be outside, feeling the breeze dance across my face, and the freedom that was surfacing in my heart. Soak it in… soak it all in. That was all I could keep saying to myself. Whatever the day had in store for me it did not even matter because this moment was good.
Tenderly and quietly I pulled him out of his slumber welcoming him to a new day. After getting ready and packing up it was time for a day of adventure. Even after our original plan was ruined, we found another place to hike. As we pulled into the parking lot we noticed a trailer probably used for a movie and only a few other cars. This is when we had our first interaction with another human being.
Mike: The Substitute Teacher from San Diego
His sun-beaten skin and faded tattoos only began to tell the story of our friend Mike. We got out of the truck ready to set foot on our hike when we came across this intriguing man. Being the people person that he is, Jordan, was quick to make conversation. After only a few short moments we discovered a lot about Mike. He had been out in Joshua Tree for five days by himself. He spent his days hiking and just wandering the outdoors. He had been a substitute teacher over the past school year and was now out of a job. Mike didn’t seem to really care. He said he has done it before and always seemed to manage. I was particularly drawn to the freedom that Mike represented. He was not tied down to a 9-5 job or obligations of this life. He was a wanderer. Living one day at time. Conversations came easily with him, he told us stories of swarming bees and adventures with his family, and suggested hikes. I like Mike…. A brief encounter with a stranger, a stranger with a story. Wish we could have talked all day.
Something I learned quickly that day is that by hanging out with Jordan I would be meeting a lot of new people. Some comfortable, some not. People from every walk of life. People with typical stories and lives. People who are crazy and extreme. I love this. I love this part of being with him. It pushes me out of my comfort zone and opens my mind. I hope to write about a lot of “friends” we meet. And I hope that Jordan will have pictures for them all!
Anyhow, after our brief interaction with Mike we went on a short hike that he recommended and spent the day wondering around Joshua Tree. By late afternoon it was time to pack up camp and head home. We were sun-beaten, shower neglected, and exhausted but the even the silent ride home was good. Something about just being together made everything better.
He dozed in an out of sleep as my mind wondered. We still made no decisions or plans for the future. Even though normally that would never sit well with me I was totally and completely content. Maybe I already knew what was to come. Everything was going to work out just fine. Peace overwhelmed me and a smile sat quietly on my lips.
After some good food, a shower and a good night’s sleep we were refreshed and ready for another day. Conversation continued easily and we spent a perfect day together. As the sun began to set we headed over to Love Boat Sushi in San Marcos, one of Jordan’s weekly traditions with his buddies. It was an experience of a lifetime and the first time I met Kenny Marquez.
Kenny Marquez: Ex-80’s Rock Star who now plays covers
He was in an 80’s band called Renegade. Now he plays covers at local venues in San Diego. Love Boat Sushi was just one of his many stops. He is old enough to be a father to us but still knows how to party! I guess you could say he was a true rock’n’roller. Always seeking out that high, the cheers of an audience, the feeling of being invincible. For some reason he really loved Jordan and Justin, they got up on the little stage at Love Boat and sang and got the whole place rocking! I have a feeling this won’t be the last time I see Kenny around!
We finished the night in laughter with everyone and drove back to the San Elijo house for some poker. As everyone showed up Jordan was looking for his deck of cards and so I went to help him. We were crouched down looking through his desk drawers and then our eyes met. We both giggled quietly and then he kissed me, or maybe it was more of a mutual thing but either way it happened. It was the first time our lips met in over four years. And it was even better than I remembered!
After this everything became a blur, we spent everyday, all throughout the day talking, texting, or hanging out. We still had no talks of any kind of specific relationship but it was pretty clear that we would not be spending very many days apart.