Monday, October 22, 2012

A Monday Memoir

Hello everybody :) As promised I'm starting a mini series for Mondays. I don't know if it'll be a continuous story with the same characters or a different character for each story. Right now I'm thinking that it'll be set in one or two neighborhoods so familiar names should pop up; but I don't think that each story will revolve around a couple characters. Basically, I'm not writing a continuous story where one chapter leads to the next. It'll read as one person's journal entry. What's different about "A Monday Memoir" and a regular rant from me is that "A Monday Memoir" will revolve around a word, a random word. You can comment below with word suggestions. The comments can be anonymous too.

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The school bell rang and Sidney absently slid her pencil into her pencil case. Her mouth curved upward into a half smile but soon realized her eraser was there at the edge of her desk. Sidney's pencil case was already zipped and she heaved a sigh. She unzipped it carefully and made sure nothing else had been left out. Half the class had left by the time her pencil case was nestled safely in her backpack. She slowly walked over to the back of the classroom. A large puddle had emerged because of the umbrellas thrown on the floor. Only five were still abandoned there, dripping wet. She looked around for her father's black umbrella. Sidney had been in a rush this morning and her brother, Adam, had taken her good umbrella. There were two shabby black umbrellas on the linoleum floor. Her teacher had already started to grade papers in the back of the room.

The bell had rang three minutes ago and Sidney was deliberate in her choice. She looked around the room hesitantly. There were only five people, still furiously scribbling down the homework assignment. Sidney pushed her brownish blonde hair behind her ear and picked up the black umbrella closest to her. There was no name tag or anything but she decided that it would have been odd to find an umbrella with a name tag. Sidney left the room carefully and waited for two seconds at the door. Maybe the rightful owner would come running towards her and tell her that she had picked up the wrong umbrella. No one even gave her a second glance as she finally trudged out the door. Her rain boots squeaked and she was slightly disappointed that the heavy pounding of rain had stopped. Instead, the clouds in all their gloomy grayness remained behind; they were the last trace of a long awaited rainfall. She shook off the excess rain off the umbrella and sat down on the wet concrete bench. Had her carpool left her? She wouldn't have been surprised but she pulled out her phone from her teal colored backpack. There were no new messages and not even one missed call. She sighed and turned to face the street. Cars were racing by in a panic to get home. Sidney wished she too could drive.

"You don't like rain?" Someone asked her. It was barely a question, more of a statement. Her eyebrows furrowed together and she stared at him oddly. No one had ever asked her a question like that before. 

"No, I like the rain," she simply said. She turned away from him until she noticed he was holding the other black umbrella. Was he sitting next to her because she had taken the wrong umbrella? "Is this yours?" She asked holding out the umbrella. It was an abrupt question and she wished he hadn't heard her. 


"Nothing." She shook her head almost furiously and stared down at her wrist. Her watch indicated that it was five minutes after the bell had rang. 

"So. . ." He tried to initiate conversation. She could feel the awkwardness hanging in the air. "Who are you waiting for?"

"Oh, my carpool," she said trying to fidget a smile. "What about you?" He shrugged. 

"Oh, you know, just the usual." She didn't understand what that meant but didn't dare to ask. She stared at his face somehow avoiding eye contact. Sidney had recognized him from somewhere, probably her history class, but she had never once talked to him before. He had dark hazel eyes that seemed sort of sad to her. 

"Why are you sad?" She suddenly asked. She hadn't even stared down at her watch. 

"I'm not," he answered with a weird look of his own. 

"Sidney, c'mon, we're leaving!" Adrienne, her neighbor, called out to her. Adrienne waved frantically and Sidney politely stood up. 

"Good bye, cheer up," she said running before he could respond. He had never met someone quite like her. 

"What were you doing?" Adrienne asked her. Adrienne smiled as they walked to her car. 

"I was just waiting for you and that guy sat down next to me."

"Daniel Connors sat down next to you?" Sidney couldn't help but feel annoyed by the patronizing manner in which Adrienne asked her questions. 

"I guess so, we have the same umbrella." Adrienne nodded but Sidney knew that this conversation was far from over. 

"Can I see it?" Sidney sighed and paused. She stared at her hands. Her hands were clutching her math textbook but no umbrella. She froze up and reluctantly stared up at Adrienne. "Whatever, Sidney, it's not raining. We can just go to the lost and found tomorrow. I'm late for volleyball practice." 

Sidney returned home and the umbrella was not missed. She wandered into the office the next morning but didn't see any umbrellas in the lonely plastic bin. Sidney left and the umbrella left her mind completely.

She came into her history class in a frantic rush. She sat down in her seat immediately as the bell rang. Sidney didn't even have time to stare at her wristwatch. The teacher was already talking about referendums and initiatives. Sidney took a minute to breathe and gently placed her math book on the floor next to her backpack. She eyed a black umbrella with a bright sticky note attached. Sidney carefully picked it up and saw a cheerful little message: Thanks, I guess I was sad. She secretly looked towards his direction and found herself embarrassed at the fact that they had made eye contact. Sidney smiled down as she looked down unaware that he was smiling too.  

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