A sunny Saturday nestled between endless days of rain called for a stroll to the park. I was so engrossed in my writing, I didn't look up until Toby started fussing on his leash. It was him again.
[Note for the guys: There are few coincidences when it comes to us. If we run into you looking pretty damn cute, the likelihood that we planned to be at that spot at that time looking that good is pretty high. It's not so much stalking as it planning for what may be. Anywho, back to the story.]
That day it wasn't just him and his monstrous dog. A boy was tagging along, too. "Great," I thought. "He has a kid. Negativo to that."
He sent me a wave and a smile as he called out for my attention from across the park. I might have acknowledged his presence with the same.
And then Toby took it to the extreme. I tried to pick him up and nearly sent all my papers flying into the wind. (It would've been pretty bad considering the topic I was writing about.) "OMG Toby, I hate you!" I muttered through my teeth. "You're making me look so bad!"
"Ciao, bella," I suddenly heard. I looked up and saw S.A.M. standing in front of me with the kid. "How are you?" he asked. "Oh, and this is my nephew."
But of course.
We discussed titillating topics such as the lovely weather we were having and his dog Bubba's recent bath. My dog, on the other hand, was not feeling the encounter. "Toby! You're shorter than his leg. He will stomp on you, do you understand?"
"He's trying to talk to Bubba," the pre-teen pointed out.
"Yeah and Bubba is not trying to participate," I said.
"It's ok," S.A.M. told Toby as he knelt to the ground and tried to calm him down.
When they were about to head home some minutes after that, S.A.M. said something to me in Italian...or French. No idea what it was exactly, but all I could say was, "Sí!" He seriously could've asked if I wanted to join the army, but I'm leaning more towards I'll see you later. And I know much more than I can manage, but these spot checks get me all flustered.
"Have you been practicing?" he asked as he started walking away. Busted.
"Dude, I haven't studied at all!" I replied with a grin.
"I want a new word from you next week," he said.
Was he seriously giving me homework? "Ok," I agreed. Did I mention I was such the teacher's pet in my day?
Then he stopped in his tracks. "Actually, here's a word for you: estivale." And he turned back around to leave.
"Wait! What does it mean?"
"You'll have to look it up," he said.
"Is it a...good word?" I asked. I should also mention I was a straight-laced goody two shoes teacher's pet.
"Absolutely!" he yelled.
Estivale, I wrote down on my notepad as I stifled a giggle and watched him walk away. "Estivale," I said to myself as I reached for my Italian textbook and flipped through the glossary once I got home. "Estivale, estivale...hmm...estivo...this doesn't have- Wait a minute!" I interrupted my thought and reached for another dictionary instead. "A ha..."
Estivale means "summery"...in French. Touché, S.A.M. Now, about that new word you wanted...