It was late August, 2006. It was warm that day, but not unbearably hot. The first week of school had passed and as I had done for the past couple of years, I attended the Aloha Party at the Baptist Student Union.
I parked on the north side, near President Boren’s house, and walked alone to the entrance that students were being guided through. Volunteers were handing out leis and I slipped one over my head. It was pink and it matched my skirt. That I remember.
I searched the crowd for the faces of my friends. Heather was somewhere in the mix and I maneuvered past the groups of people to where she was. As usual at this beginning of the year party things were loud and it was hard to hear a conversation at normal volume unless you were pressed into a circle. That’s how most of us were that weren’t taking advantage of the volleyball nets that had been set up nearby.
We got in line for snow cones from one of the local favorites that was set up specially for the party. Mine was green and I rarely ordered a green snow cone. It’s weird that I recall that, but I think it was green apple. Which was probably the lesser of two evils.
Somewhere in the crowd was a tall lanky boy who was most likely surrounded by a large group of friends or traveling from group to group. He was just as social then as he is now, probably more so. I don’t remember seeing him that night, but he remembers seeing me. And when he did, he didn’t recall the evening a few months earlier when we talked about westerns and school and what we were planning on doing with our lives. But that night he looked across the crowd at me in a pink skirt and black shirt, with my hair pulled back in a ponytail and my hands most likely still smelling a little like bleach from the day school, and decided he was interested in finding out more about this quiet, laughing girl. Me.
He left the party early, but not before deciding he was going to find out more about me. Maybe it was for the best that he didn’t stick around any longer than he did. A few minutes more and he would have been witness to my foray into the world of karaoke with a some of my friends. The song we sang was, by no accident, the same one that he and I would walk back up the aisle to less than three years from this night. But it was going to take some work to get there.