Andrea, the clean slate
The door cracks quietly, as she lets herself out. It’s 5 AM.
I doze for another six hours. When I awake, my head throbs. The summer heat in my basement apartment is already unbearable. I limp to the kitchen, pull a bottle of vodka out of the freezer and try to recall last nights bender.
It started at an old colleagues book release party. Well, to be honest, it started in this very kitchen, hours before the party, with the first half of this very bottle of vodka, listening to ‘Diz and Getz’ on repeat. I arrived at the party already drunk, but in a classy, jolly way, not belligerent. I don’t recall any outbursts, or disapproving looks. In fact, I believe I might have been in fine form.
There were a couple of women who caught my eye – a leggy brunette with a loud laugh and a small Asian girl, with a sarcastic streak. I vaguely recall speaking with both, and now that I’m thinking about it, I remember feeling like the Asian girl might have gotten in a cab with me.
After another swig from the bottle, I put it back in the freezer and lumber to the bathroom, where I wash my face with cold water. As I’m about to take a piss, I realize the seat on the toilet is down. That’s odd. I haven’t ate a thing in four days. Then, I notice a condom wrapper in the waste basket. Did that Asian girl come back here last night?
I retreat to my bedroom and look for clues. It’s a filthy mess, so it hard to say if I brought anyone back. I notice two wine glasses on the bedside table. Wow, I think, you’re full of surprises, aren’t you, Dupree? I sit at the foot of the bed and try to piece together anything else. Did we maybe wind up at a jazz club. I have a vision of myself dancing.
I look at the floor, and amidst the clump of dirty shirts and half-read mystery paperbacks, there’s a small handbag. The contents are less than revealing – a compact, a tube of lipstick, maybe $45 and an expired, Florida drivers license. Her name is Andrea.
I dial information. They have neither a listing for Andrea here, or at the Miami address on her license. At the library, where I use the internet these days, I search for her for three hours, but nothing comes up.
A couple days go by and I constantly wonder who this woman is. I’ve been one-night-stranded before, but the mystery associated with this instance in paralyzing. I contact everyone I knew at the party that night, but no one knew who she was.
Her ID stays in my pocket for the next month, as I hope to run into her again, aware that, as time goes on, I’m less and less likely to recognize her. Every short, sophisticated Asian woman I pass gets a second glance from me. I remain faithful, though, that I’ll find her. Whatever connection we made, I want to rekindle it.
I certainly would like to know who she was, whether I’d actually be attracted to her if I wasn’t black out drunk. But I mostly want to know who I was when she met me. Why was I attractive enough to come home with, but repellant enough to never want to see again? I’m desperate to know what kind of man she thought Knox Dupree was, because, if I couldn’t remember, there must be some truth to it.
Unfortunately, I never find out.
Filed under: stories of heartbreak | 1 Comment