She knew where he lived. Her roommate had been dating a guy, T, who lived across the hall from him. The guys who lived next door were good friends, coming and going to each others’ places at all hours of the day. A typical campus apartment.
It was a Saturday night and she had tickets to the opera. She and her girlfriends spent the better part of the afternoon getting dressed up, fixing their hair, applying makeup. This was something she would most likely do only once in her lifetime. Operas didn’t necessarily “come to town” very often. If they did, college girl friends were the only people who would go with her. Afterward, as they walked back to campus she thought to herself how very cultured and strangely strong she felt. Like she was stronger than she had ever really believed. Very much her own person.
Since all the girls in her newfound group of friends had been to the opera, when they returned to campus they set out to find the guys. Most of them were at T’s apartment, just exactly where they thought they would be. She walked around, talking to people gathered at the makeshift party. Some of them were in the living room listening to E play the guitar and sing. E was a good singer. He was in concert choir with her. She chatted with a few of her other concert choir acquaintances who lived with T. She and her friend peered into the packed living room and everyone raised their hand and called out a welcome to them. They laughed and said a group hello. B was there. She smiled, made eye contact and waved. He smiled and nodded back.
It was like that for many weeks. She would see him out and about with her guy friends. Soon he became one of them. On any given week night she and a friend would head over to T’s place to see what was going on. And she would walk across the hall and knock on B’s door to see how he was doing. He was always studying. His room was always neat as a pin.
They got their grade back on their presentation. It was good. They were pleased. One December evening, on the way back from meeting with their professor to go over their presentation grade, they were reviewing the class since the semester was over. B thanked her for working so hard on the presentation. She said she was happy to do it and glad that their hard work had paid off. As they walked quickly through the cold air, she commented that she would be taking the second level of the course next semester. He said, “Yeah, me too.” Her breath puffed in clouds before her, her pace quick. She wanted to get back to the warmth of her apartment. “Cool!” she said. “Maybe we’ll get to work together again!” “That would be good,” he said.
They parted ways and went to their separate apartments. But stragely, almost looking forward to next semester's class.