They sat at the table next to us. We were on a lunch date, me and Chris. They were on a lunch date, mom and daughter. Mom had the brussels sprout salad, daughter had the fried calamari, scrunching her face at the pieces with tentacles. “Is that octopus?” she asked. They both had fish for the main course. We left before they ordered dessert. “Sociology,” the mom said. “No, he texted me! He said psychology!” The daughter corrected. She was in high school. They had an easy banter between them, not “best friends” but clearly mom and daughter.
I know Mabel and I would never had had such a lunch date, nor easy banter with big words like sociology or psychology. She would never had lightheartedly mentioned texting. Yet I was envious of them. In a different world, fifteen years from now, I could have been taking Mabel out for our own kind of lunch date. She would have been so proud to be out with her mom in a fancy restaurant, ordering from a grown up menu. She would likely have squealed at the tentacled pieces of calamari and ordered the fried food over the vegetables.
An unexpected reminder of what will not be.