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The Barmaid Blog™: Life for a 30-something Manhattan Barmaid

Erev (Part II)

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Erev (Part II)

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Green Drink
The first thing I notice is that my hair hurts. When I open my eyes, the room spins a little, then spins back the other way, so I close my eyes again. I hear a scratching sound coming from my bedroom door, and it's even more irritating than usual. "Fuck off, bitch," I croak in the general direction of my roommate's cat, on the other side of the door.

"Excuse me?" says a voice from behind me, and I open my eyes again in mild confusion, my mind struggling to catch up. Last night, Dara, bachelorette party... oh, boy.

We started with dinner at one of the nicer sushi places downtown. It was a good crowd - Dara, Dara's sister and maid of honor Betsy, my ex-roommate Jill, two other friends of Dara's whom I'd met before, and four or five whom I hadn't. We had a few bottles of sake along with dinner, and then set off on a bar crawl. It was a wet bar crawl, at that, because although the worst of the thunderstorm had blown through pretty quickly around 5pm, it was still raining and windy.

We started at a bar in the East Village... then Chelsea for a stop at a wonderful gay bar to look at gorgeous, unattainable hunks... then a tavern in the Flatiron... Murray Hill... and before long, it was close to two in the morning and we were in upper midtown looking for another place to land. I'm pretty sure I'm the one who suggested The Bar - Dara even asked if I was sure, but I steered us there anyway. It was a familiar place, we would probably know some people there both in the bar and behind it, and we'd probably get treated pretty well.

I remember who's behind me, and I smile a little before I roll over.

"Not you, Will. I was talking to the cat." I put my hand on his chest. "I feel like crap."

"I kept telling you to drink some water. You were pretty drunk." Something flickers in the back of my mind.

"You told me that a few times last night, that I was pretty drunk. Why?"

"Because I've known you for a long time, and I don't want to be anybody's mistake."

"I knew what I was doing. I didn't want to be alone, and I trust you."

He smiles. "That's what you said last night. Along with a few other things I'm not sure I should repeat."

My head starts throbbing, and my stomach churns a little. "Oh, man... I hope I'm feeling well enough to eat something before Kol Nidrei, or else tomorrow is going to be really unpleasant."

"Before what?"

"Um... Yom Kippur starts tonight."

"Right... the one where you don't eat."

"Will, I'm sorry to put you on the spot like this, but would you come with me tonight?"

"To your temple?"

"Yeah. I used to go with my father. I'm sure a hundred people I don't really know are going to heap on the condolences, and I don't think I'm strong enough yet to get through it by myself."

"Debra, I've got a - well, I've got plans." He strokes my arm.

"Oh."

"Yeah. I'm sorry."

"Listen, I feel like I should apologize, and not just because it's the time of year for it. I put you on the spot last night, and I didn't even really stop to consider whether you wanted to sleep with me. I hope you don't think I was using you."

"I've always found you attractive, Debra. I just don't hit on bartenders as a general rule, I find I get better service that way. The only reason I even hesitated was that you were drunk. I was worried I was taking advantage."

I smile, and glance at the clock. "I think I'm going to try to sleep for a few more hours."

"I wish I could join you, but I have to work. I think I'm going to be late as it is." He kisses me on the forehead and gets out of bed. I get my first look at his body in the daylight, and I swear I almost say, "Wow" out loud. In the four years since I first said he hasn't lost his football-playing physique, he still hasn't lost his football-playing physique. This guy could probably have pretty much any woman he wants, but he hasn't really dated since Samantha died.

When Will leaves, Emily's cat sneaks into my room and hops up onto my bed. "Hi, Tattoo," I say as I scratch her behind the ears. She boldly steps forward and starts licking my nose.

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