I woke up on the grey couch in your apartment quite early. I can never sleep for very long when I drink. I went into your room to see if you were awake but you were sprawled out on your stomach drooling on your pillow. You were very drunk last night so I decided not to wake you. There were plastic cups and empty bottles all over the counters and floor in the living room. The lingering sour smell of alcohol made my insides shudder but I ignored it and cleaned everything up. What I really wanted was some coffee and toast but I didn’t have any idea where to go. I sat on the couch fiddling with my phone and drank tap water from a Disneyland mug. Your apartment is different than I thought it would be. You used to paint all the time but the walls are bare here. I thought I heard you getting up but it was just your roommate Meredith running into the bathroom to throw up. She was funny and clearly the drunkest she’d ever been last night. I couldn’t stand listening to her so I took the stairs to the roof. It was warm and there was a perfect breeze that reminded me of the summers we used to spend at home. I found a plastic lawn chair and dragged it over to the edge that overlooked the morning traffic. I leaned back and let my mind wander as the sun moved its way higher into the sky. I don’t know how long I had been sitting there when the sound of the door to the stairs slamming shut pulled me from my thoughts. You waved and grabbed another chair. You sat down next to me and took a cigarette from your pocket. “Do you want one?” you asked me. “No, I don’t smoke.” “Oh that’s right.” “How are you feeling? You were pretty gone last night.” “My liver’s used to it.” “I never go to parties like that at school.” “Did you hate it?” “No no, it was really fun. What are we doing today?” “I was thinking we could go get something greasy for breakfast then just relax in the park for a while. Sound okay?” “Yeah sure, it’s summer so I’m casual.” “I know, but this is your last day here so I want to squeeze in everything you want to do.” “Well I never get to see you anymore Sarah, so I just want to spend the day with you.” “Yeah I hate that. We used to practically live together in high school.” “Feels like forever ago now. Are you still going to live in the city after you’re done with school?” “Probably. I fit out here much better than I ever fit at home.” “Yeah. I guess I figured that.” “What about you?” “I don’t know. I can’t be so close to home anymore but I know this could never feel enough like home to me.” “You’re still the same,” you said, after a pause. “I guess so. Not entirely, but in a lot of ways that’s true. You’re not at all the same,” I said. “I know. I don’t even know when it happened.” “I guess it was in all the time we weren’t together.” You half-smiled and we let the sound of the city sounds replace our words. We were different now but we would grow comfortable with the difference over time.
different. different. the same. the same.