We got to Bob and Barbara’s last night during the lull between the end of happy hour and beginning of Friday night. I hadn’t been there since the night we celebrated my 26th birthday last May, as a friend had given her ex-boyfriend custody of Bob and Barbara’s (as well as Dirty Frank’s) when they broke up. But she had friends in town Friday night that she wanted to take there, as well as a new love to introduce to us, so she arranged with the ex for a one-night visitation.
I nursed a Yuengling and watched as the bar filled up with hipsters, students, long-time regulars and fans of Nate Wiley and the Crowd Pleasers. And I didn’t want to be there. Surrounded by friends and strangers, I was completely discontent and unhappy. Instead of trying to wave off this feeling of being in the wrong place, like a fly buzzing around my head, I went with it and left at the apex of the evening.
This was different for me, because in the past I’ve always hating leaving early, afraid that I was going to miss something, be missed, be forgotten or somehow lose out on an experience that everyone else will talk about for years to come. I’ve found though that when I follow my desire to leave, I rarely actually do miss out.
As I walked home, I was so happy to be out of the noise and smoke of the bar. Happy to be walking north along 15th street with my friend Lara, quietly catching up and making dinner plans for the following week. Happy to walk alone up Chestnut after seeing Lara into a cab, watching my long leather coat (best thrift store purchase ever) swirl around my ankles (it makes me feel like a rock star).
Happy to be listening to my instincts and feeling a little more like the adult I’m trying to become.