She marked the time of the kiss, so simple and benign at first, at exactly 1:11PM. A time that, for some metaphysical, astrological or numerological reason, she was inextricably tied to.
Years later she would continue to be slightly obsessed by this time of day. If it was 1:09, she would stare at the time until it progressed to 1:11 and would feel a small outburst in the pit of her stomach. At 1:12, it would be gone.
On the first instance of 1:11, she was on a plane flying to attend her mother’s funeral. She had always been exceptionally close to her mother, but in the past five years she had been swallowed slowly but steadily into the vacuum of dementia. She would have preferred to be able to say goodbye in a much more cinematic way with a last thank you to the woman who raised and loved her unconditionally, and her mother gifting her some final words of wisdom and love. But, they were destined to have the kind of farewell that slowly slid into oblivion without any real end point to refer back to over the years for some sort of solace. Her last lucid conversation with her mother went unchecked and, try as she might, she could not remember what it was or when it took place.
She felt her own life had taken on some of the tone and color of dementia. The thread that connected her to her unique likes, dislikes, passions thinning to the point of breakage. She could only picture herself in a hazy, watery reflection, no longer in sharp focus.
This is what she was thinking of as she stared out over the fluffy marshmallow landscape outside her small window at 1:11 Mountain Standard Time.
Then, the second instance of 1:11. The kiss.
She was at a crossroads. Possibly the first of her life, or at least the first she took note of. She’d always been a person who winged it. Never a planner, just waited for the signs of what her next step should be by what crash landed at her feet at a particular moment. Then, she’d stop, say “What the hell?” and move into that direction. She lived her life as if she were in a maze of life choices. Hit a wall, turn right. Hit a wall, turn left. But, always keep moving.
WIth this new wall there didn’t seem to be any logical way to turn. She just kept moving against it like some kid’s wind-up toy.
Unbelievably, as she now stood in front of her husband, unsure of what to say, she allowed herself a glance at the clock.
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