I ended up staying in the resort just a little while longer. The return flight to Cairo wasn’t until six days later and in that time, Daniel and I spent it well. All we did was talk about, well, everything. We were serious and confiding at one point, and joking the other. Daniel insisted that he sleep on the couch, but I had to refuse. I couldn’t put him out and sleeping on the couch was the least I could do. Every day was the same thing with me: I woke up, got into a bathing suit, one that hardly left any room for self-deprecation, and then jumped into The Red Sea. After that, I swam in the swimming pool, and then went back to the room to shower off the day and then go to dinner. I slept right after, but Daniel tended to go for a walk around the resort. He even got me a bracelet that he said some girl gave to him for me. As a gift.
“She saw us coming in and wanted to give you this,” Daniel said, holding up a white beaded bracelet with a blue eye in the middle. The evil eye, it’s called. “I ended up getting a black one for myself just because she was so sweet. She’s so poor, has absolutely nothing, and gave us something for free. Can you believe that?”
I smiled. “It’s pretty amazing.”
“It’s hard to encounter whole-hearted people like that sometimes.”
In my bed, on the couch, I gazed up at Daniel as he crouched over me, wondering if I made a mistake. It turns out I’m as doubtful about being with him as about breaking up with him. Who knew?
“You broke up with Daniel?” Chloe asked, her eyes slanted with sadness. “Why?”
I threw myself on the couch in a swift drop, exhausted from the trip. “It’s just not working out anymore. We’re not the same.”
“But…but, it could only mean you guys need some more time.”
Chloe was always the biggest relationship cheerleader. I shook my head. “We gave it all we could, Chloe. What more could we do, honestly?”
Chloe shrugged. “I don’t know, stick it out for just a little while longer or something.”
I rolled my eyes. “If I ever have to ‘stick it out’ at a relationship then that’s sign enough that there’s something wrong.”
“Well, what are you going to do now? Where is he?”
“He’s staying in Egypt and I’m moving to New York.”
Chloe’s eyes widened and she straightened up. “What!?”
“What about what?” I asked. God, my words are so weird. My mind is clearly not off vacation mode yet.
“Is he staying forever?”
I laughed. “No, he’s finishing out the rest of the trip there and then he’ll be back in December.”
“Back in New York?” I nodded. “Where you’ll be?” she continued.
I nodded again. “I’ve hardly paid any attention to interviews in California. And besides, I want to do something that’s different for a change. I want to be scared.”
Chloe scrunched up her face in confusion. “Scared?”
“Yeah,” I said. “I don’t know why people think fear is such a bad thing all the time. Maybe when a man is coming after you with machete, yeah, I see their point. But when it comes down to new experiences, I want to be completely out of my element.”
Chloe groaned. “That sounds dangerous.”
“I feel like I’m suffocating, Chloe.” Chloe furrowed her brows. I shook my head. “Look, I don’t mean that California and my best friends are suffocating me. I mean that my lack of anything to do with new experiences is shocking. I want to do more. I want to live freely.”
“Like a bird, I bet,” Chloe crossed her arms over her chest and lifted an eyebrow cheekily.
“Yeah like Nelly Furtado is like a bird.” I pinched her thigh and Chloe yelped. I laughed. “Don’t be a dick.”
“If I was a dick, I think I’d be a pretty big one,” Chloe muttered in absent thought.
I shook my head, rattling my brain of the formation of the words I just heard. “What did I just hear?” I laughed.
Chloe chuckled and returned her attention to me. “Nothing, sorry, I went off track a bit.”
“A bit! I don’t think I can ever let that go,” I laughed.
“Alright,” Chloe rolled her eyes, “moving on.”
I bit my lip in thought. “I have some money saved up. I can look for a place right now, put a down payment, and then move by December or January.”
“So you don’t even know where you’d have Christmas and New Year’s?” Chloe looked worried.
“Relax,” I smiled.
Chloe pouted. “It’s Christmas and New Year’s though.”
“I’ll do my best to have it with you guys in California. I love you all, I wouldn’t want to miss it for the world but I just don’t know where I’d be at at that point in my life.”
“Man,” Chloe sighed, “it’s going to be so crazy. You’re going to be in New York, by yourself; it freaks me out.”
I shook my head. “I wouldn’t be by myself.”
Chloe angled her brows downwards in thought. “Who else do you know in New York?”
I bit my lip and caught the name in my throat. I didn’t want to mention who I meant because I didn’t want Chloe or anyone to take it the wrong way other than the fact that I knew one person, besides Daniel, in New York.
Regardless, I finally said his name. “Adam.”