April 10, 1994 – Sunday – 7:30 p.m.

Henry made pancakes before church and Jonathan drove us all in. I brought my camera with me this morning. Marcus and I sang in Praise and Worship then went straight back into Faith Street to get into our mime character makeup.

Faith Street went great. I like it a lot better than the old way of Children’s Church. I kept my makeup on afterwards during the Steer Wrestlin’ and stayed in character. Tenielle said I had too much pride and ego for doing so.

I hope this is just her time of the month and that she is not really mad at me for such a stupid reason.

I broke character later and started talking again. All the kids kept saying, “I thought you couldn’t talk.”

Veronica and Sherry were there this morning. It was great to see them coming back.

In Faith Street, there was this new girl. Today was her first time. After the service, she and her little brother couldn’t find their mother. I helped them. She held onto my shirt while we walked around looking for her. We found her later on. This girl is 12. I only know that because in Faith Street we played a game based on ages. She actually too old for Faith Street, but she didn’t know that.

I ate up at Jonathan’s car with him. Jenna walked by and I asked about the letter and the story. She said she liked it. Then she smiled real big and stared at me. I didn’t look away, I just returned the stare, deep into her eyes. And she did what she does so well. She told me something with her eyes. She’s knows there more to that story than just a bird and a human boy.

After that I walked to get some more dessert and the 12-year-old girl came up to me and gave me a cookie. I thought nothing of it and walked on. Sherry pulled me over and said that a girl named Dusty liked me. I don’t even know a Dusty, so I figured she meant Misty, which everyone knows likes me.

I walked into the church, got my dessert and went outside and sat next to Tenielle. She didn’t say much. I had an extra cupcake and I offered it to her. She said, “No, you got it, so you have to eat it.”

I shrugged and then put it close to my mouth, but then she just took the whole thing and stuffed it in my face. It stuck to all my white mime makeup. She laughed. I was kind of mad, but it was good to see her laugh. I washed it off and got another cupcake to return the favor. She saw me and then came up to me and grabbed my arms. She was smiling, saying, “Oh, no you don’t!”

She gave me a hug and walked off. That was the last I saw of her. I didn’t see her talk to Kevin any today, but Kevin was talking to Amanda all day.

Then the 12-year-old came up to me and said, “Did you have cupcake on your face?” I said, “yes,” and then she wanted to know who did it. Tenielle wasn’t around to point out. Then this little girl asked my name. I told her. Then it hit me like a ton of bricks.

“What’s your name?” I asked.

“Dusty.”

Yep, I was right.

Then another girl showed up and tried to get us together. What the heck? I gave her the whole, “I’m going off to college, let’s just be friends” speech. We talked a little more.

She cute, but she told Shurby’s daughter that I asked her for her phone number. She lied. Then another girl came up and put a napkin in my pocket. Her phone number was on the napkin.

I was going to take some pictures and I gave her the attention she wanted by asking her to be in the group photo. She said goodbye to me and I said goodbye to her. I don’t like her, but perhaps I can show her that friendly love and save the world all over again.

That’s what I’m here for anyway, right?

I finished up the roll of film today. I’ll hopefully get them developed by the end of the week.

Henry and Mom took Kevin back to college and Cheryl came up to Marcus and Jonathan and I and said that she and Ryan were going to San Lee Park if we wanted to go. Ryan was actually just waiting in the car. She didn’t get out. It was weird.

So, we went and walked around and had a water fight.

Ryan is not as beautiful to me as she used to be. It’s almost like what made her beautiful was to watch her express her faith in church, but now that I don’t see that anymore, there is nothing there that I’m attracted to. I don’t notice her eyes anymore. They don’t even look like that magical green that used to entrance me.

While we were at the park, Joel drove up and we talked some. They were going out on the paddleboats.

Joel is really nice and serious, he doesn’t joke around. I like that. I’m sick of all the child’s play. I’m really ready to grow up and get serious.

Cheryl and Ryan went home and so did we. I took a shower when I came home and began writing.

So there it is.

The weekend was different.

I hope Tenielle is okay.

So here I am. I must leave them where they are. I must let them grow.

I can’t stay here much longer.

I’m not supposed to.

I’m letting go of things whether I want to or not.

You saw what happened this weekend.

Christi, Ryan, Tenielle, Jenna, they are all birds just passing by. And they will. They will pass by.

Ryan turned from the sun to a bird way off in the distance. So far away, I can’t see her.

Christi? It was nice to hear you laugh during the movie.

Jenna, the meaning of that story is the plot that has come and gone between us.

Tenielle, hopefully this will just happen every 28 days. There aren’t that many of those until the middle of August.

I can’t go on like this.

This is not what I want.

I want romance, not puppy love.

I want commitment and understanding and conversation and maturity. These things can’t be found here. I’ll drink that glass of milk somewhere else.

Where? I don’t know.

It will be somewhere though. Perhaps it will be when I start all over. When I start all over in a place with new street names and different parks. A place with different people. New people.

A place soon to be my home.

A place to begin my journey towards where I must go.

A place where I can save the world.

A land hopefully flowing with milk.

Lees-McRae.

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