Forks and Spoons: Adventure and lust make this summer choice hot

As the early evening breeze blew in from the creaking porch doors to cool my face, the only light that was on in my big suburban house shone over my computer screen in the living room, and the only noise emanated from the speakers by my feet. It was the faint sound of instant messages from high school buddies, and more importantly, from a short list of girls I felt I could have had some sort of a connection with, had we ever hung out.

It was not your typical weekend at the end of August. There was no anxiety over the usual questions: How were my friends and I going to get alcohol? Who would be around tonight? Would I get with someone later that evening? Would I enjoy it? These everlasting dilemmas of alcohol and sex that seem to precede almost every Thursday, Friday and Saturday for single college students were nonexistent.

Forty miles west of Boston in the comforts of my real home, I wasn’t hounded by the fact that I didn’t have an answer to these questions. Most of my friends, the ones I actually care about and would have called, were already back in school. For some reason, Boston doesn’t bring its students back until early September.

Ding. Ding. Ding. I thought to myself, there is always Option Number One (my ex-girlfriend). Option Number One was not going to be around until next week. But then again, who knew if Option Number One would be any better than Option Number Two, a new woman in my life. She would be around for the next three weeks and had a boyfriend the last time we hung out. Our time together always felt unfinished, but on one fateful evening, everything fell into place. Plus, I had never been with someone older than me.

Two hours later after a lengthy conversation filled with catching up and agreeing to hang out within the next week, I put on some music and pondered whether the rendezvous would turn into anything. I was excited by the anticipation of something new, and as I lay down in bed, caressed by the breeze once more, I realized I had just begun another summer fling.

After a week of phone tag, we finally got together. At first, the vibe wasn’t great and awkwardness filled the air. But if it’s a fling, what’s wrong with a little bit of awkwardness?

Date number two with Option Number Two proved to be a good combination. Beforehand, I had been getting impatient because her mom was very controlling. No 21-year-old should have a 1 a.m. curfew. She was also spending most of her free time preparing for a sixth-month trip to California. With less than two weeks to get ready, she seemed quite busy and conflicted between a late summer fling with me and responsibility. At the same time, she seemed completely enthralled by me.

I was impressed with her date idea, a 9 p.m. trip to the beach, which was 45 minutes away. I picked her up in my truck and off we went. A light rain did not dilute the mood, or the walk along the deserted beach. We didn’t hold hands at first, but when we decided to stop walking, she nestled between my legs on the sand. We were becoming physically closer by the second and were making out before I knew what was happening.

There were a few stragglers on the beach up to no good, and a group of cops showed up at one point to put an end to what might have been a small orgy and a drug deal. We just laughed and speculated as to what exactly might have been going on in the nearby shadows.

It remained quiet and the boardwalk was fairly empty for a summer night. The stars were out. We got sandy in areas you do not want sand. Everything was perfect, and when we finally separated that night, I thought that maybe this thing could be more. Not just a fling.

Now, as I look back on that night on the beach I think a connection could be forged in such a spectacular environment between me and almost any attractive girl. After that awesome night, we had a few more similarly awesome nights. There seemed to be potential, but the final date with Option Number Two never took place.

Responsibility became her priority during the last couple of days as she prepared to leave home. On what was supposed to be our last night together, she called to say there was just too much left to do.

We were both saddened and agreed to keep in touch, perhaps even visit. I made a few genuine efforts that were very well received, and potential for a relationship still seemed high throughout that time. But before long, I had one girlfriend for two months, and then another girlfriend who turned into “something more.”

Summer flings are an odd brand of relationship with no real set of rules. The only thing that rules is passion, spontaneity and desire. An on-and-off relationship with Option Number One (the ex) had been going on for years, but I wanted something different, I knew that there was so much more I could experience.

After a certain point with anyone who is in a romantic pickle with an Option Number One, you begin to feel cornered and want to explore. And luckily for me, that route became not only possible, but an incredible way to end an the summer.

And in the end, even though I can count these occurrences with Option Number Two on one hand, our relationship was characterized by all those same words you use to describe any summer fling: exhilarating, convenient, careless, short and stupid.

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