With just a click – Chapter 4

They spent that whole first weekend texting back and forth, getting to know each other, sharing their rather sad, lonely lives, that were so strangely similar. Her sweet Don was a retired cop, and he had had some serious health problems. Thankfully he had recovered. Maybe it had inspired him to do something with his life and search for his long lost love? Paquita loved her job as a teacher, although she had to admit that lately she’d begun to lose some of that inner joy, as the loneliness around her affected many of her choices in her life. Yet within days, she was wearing makeup again, fixing her hair, and taking care with what she wore, because who knew when he might Skype her!! She was suddenly that young carefree teacher that a colleague had once called Sparkles (this is for you Sherry, for being so supportive of our happiness). In those days her earrings matched her shoes which matched her clothing. And Sherry had told her that it wasn’t fair that Spanish teachers could wear bright gypsy skirts to school!!

Don and Paqui texted, voice messages, and talked about their sons, so similar in age and personality: both older sons dating a girl called Stephanie, and both younger sons considering the same career. His sons looked just like him, and hers looked just like her. He had divorced his first wife after 22 years of marriage. Paquita’s marriage had only lasted 7. He had married the last woman that he dated, and just 7 months later it had fallen apart. Paquita totally understood, and she did not judge him. Nor did she laugh, as he asked her please not to
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She understood. She probably would have married Larry if he had asked her those first few months when she had fooled herself into thinking that she was happy.
So much about her life changed within days. Before Don, she had spent her life working nonstop. Tirelessly. Filing up her empty lonely hours with work: first as a teacher from 8:15 until 3:30, and then as a tutor until 9 or 10 every night. She even tutored on weekends, anything from having to return to a lonely apartment.

Suddenly she started canceling lessons, and setting aside a Don time every day. This became holy time to her, as she steadfastly refused to tutor from 5-6 every day. No matter how earnestly her parents needed her. “But Jack cannot focus at 7:30 at night,” argued one mother. “He cannot focus at 5 pm, or even at 10 am,” retorted Paquita, who’d known Jack since he was in first grade. (note to self: write a book about life as a foreign language teacher). Her father had once told her that she spoke 6 languages and that she couldn’t say “No” in any of them. Thanks to Don, she finally learned to say “No”, and to make time for herself.

This holy time between them was the hour leading up to his bedtime and it made her so happy to be the last voice that he heard every night. They would spend hours on skype together, her wee early morning and lunch, and his late nighttime, just gazing at each other, smiling til it hurt, kissing and yes, even stroking the Ipad, phone, or computer screen like love sick teenagers. That screen brought them together, kept them close, and showed them all their emotions pouring out of their souls, contributing to their falling in love again. Didn’t someone once say that eyes were the vessels of the soul? Paquita, normally great at remembering quotes could think of nothing but Don, and was even mixing up all her languages.

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