My pores begin to expand. My feet have fallen into an alternating rhythm of hitting the treadmill. My eyes are forever shifting back to the numbers in front of me: .84 mile for almost there and 134 calories for I wonder what fraction of my dinner is that. It’s a one-mile kinda night.
My skin, beads of sweat; the windows to this tiny gym, droplets of rain.
I increase the treadmill speed as I go into the final minute. Kent comes into view, to the far left. He looks as if he’s recently been rained on.
“It looks like there’s an Instagram filter covering the outside,” he says.
“Hang on, I’m finishing up here,” I say.
My eyes fixate back on those numbers. .99 mile for punch the Cool Down button in a second. My pores are finally leaking. It rains all the way down my back. Kent is already outside. I go and meet him.
He’s right. It is a very light orange-and-purple evening sky. It is the first break of sunshine after a dark and stormy afternoon. It contrasts with the soft green of the palm trees in a way where if I could change one thing, I wouldn’t. It looks like we’re inside an Instagram picture. A watercolor painting. It is refreshing after the indoor run.
We are passing the pool. It glistens, making the leaves seem less like dirt and more like art.
“I’d love to take a dip right now,” I say. And then I think, Well, what’s stopping you? I feel a sudden rush of impulse to rip off my shirt and dive into the beautiful, glistening water. I am wearing a sports bra, after all. It can be done.
But, my feet do not stop and turn. I feel them continuing the alternating rhythm of hitting and then springing from the floor, towards my apartment. They never break from stride. The moment is passing.
“I wonder what the roof looks like,” Kent says. We are already in the parking lot. We have a front-row view of Downtown from our rooftop. I am intrigued. I nod at him.
The moment has already passed. I would not turn around and run back to the pool now, but the idea clings to my skin like humidity. I follow Kent up the stairs.
He reaches to the top first. He looks around as I approach. He smiles and then shrugs, saying that it is underwhelming.
From where I am standing, I can only see Kent and sky. It is a brilliant view.
When I get to the top, though, I am not as impressed. Too many buildings. Nevertheless, we stand and take in the view. A moment goes by and we head back to the apartment. I am still sweating. That damn Austin heat. The regret of not spontaneously jumping in the pool becomes real.
How many more chances are you going to get to swim in that pool? I ask myself, climbing the stairs back down. Think of how it would feel to be fully submerged into that cool body of water right at this very second.
As I walk into my living room, I think, It’s the little moments in life that matter. We are entering a philosophical level. The Universe presents to you those perfect moments randomly; you can let it pass or you can dance. Or however the words go. Dance, damn you! Maybe the point of life is to trust your intuition when it recognizes those perfect moments and allow yourself to do exactly what you truly desire to, at those very moments.
The regret only lingers until I take a cold shower, however.