school year 2006-2007.
like every other kid at camp that summer, i went home. to my job at the pool. to a few weeks of freedom before classes started. and like every other kid at camp, when i got home, i signed in to my newly established facebook profile and started sending out friend requests to all my camp companions. in those days, facebook was coming up in the world. it was exclusively for college students and it was sucking us all in with its stay-connected charms and status updates. how sweet it is to be a child of the social-networking generation. i am surprised to this day that i was brave enough to ask grant to be my facebook friend. and even more surprised that he said yes. grant is the kind of guy who you can tell is just cool. you know it when you see him. and all of us campers picked up on it. we all wanted to be his friend. he's the kind of guy who has this shining reputation without even trying, and without an ounce of ego. i remember a few days after he had "accepted me," sitting cross- legged on the corner of a king-size bed, surrounded by my best friends, the camp stories being dished out, and christine saying, "i can't believe you're friends with grant!" i grinned sheepishly and stared at my knees. my thoughts exactly, christine.
after a few weeks of being home, after i had come down from my "camp high," i still thought about grant a lot, especially since i had a means of communicating with him. i thought he was the most fascinating person on earth. i had a crush.. big time. but i didn't want to admit it. i was the girl who never wanted to be teased about liking someone. i was the girl who avoided my name linking up with anybody else's. i didn't want to be boy crazy, i just wanted to wait for the right boy. but in august, i made a historic move. i said to my mom, "you know who would be a good catch? that grant harms." thereby unofficially giving my family the heads up on this guy who would become the center of my world, and turn out to be the man of my dreams.
in the fall, grant and i wrote sporadic wall posts and short letters to each other. i was majoring in french, dabbling in spanish and russian, and working 12 hours a week at my orthodontist's office. grant had packed up and moved out to california, just to live in california. our messages were of the lighthearted genre. on my end, they were loaded with silly, unnatural words and contained way too many exclamation points. i was trying. he was being himself: witty, clever, and not at all a flirt. i was a little star-struck. he was older than i was, and i was amazed that he would spend time writing to me. our pen-pal relationship had no commitments, no design, and no end in sight. we just genuinely enjoyed hearing what the other had to say. so we kept writing. it was wholesome and classy. slow-moving and stress free. old-fashioned letter writing was proving to be the sweetest part of my life.
..to be continued.