Fourteen years ago, I went on a New Year's trip to Las Vegas with a friend from my college choir and three of her old high-school friends, one of whom was P.
At that point, P and I had known each other for about eight months, but we'd never socialized outside the group. He had literally gotten up out of his sickbed to go on this trip -- he had a horrible virus that was probably the flu -- and was still so sick that with five of us crammed into a double room, he got a bed to himself because no one wanted to risk being exposed to his germs. (Much later, he told me, "You were going, so I had to go too!") Within the first 24 hours, we discovered that we really only wanted to spend time together, and soon we were splitting off from the rest of the group at every opportunity -- so much that everyone started grinning knowingly at us and making "Oh look, there they go again" comments.
So anyway, New Year's Eve fell on the third day of the trip. We were in the middle of a casino when midnight arrived, and since we could hardly kiss for the first time in front of everyone, we hugged each other instead. I remember it so clearly, standing there surrounded by the sounds of five-dollar slots and cheering, standing there for so long that eventually other people in our party started cutting in -- "Hey, what about us?" I remember the blue shirt P had on and that he had to bend down a little bit to hug me properly because he was six inches taller. I remember it all, and if I could choose any minute of my life to relive, that might just be the one.
He and I used to reminisce fondly about that New Year's all the time -- how much fun we had, and how much we missed each other during the week between when we came home and when we saw each other again. (He invited me to dinner at the first opportunity, and the rest is history.) Today marks 18 months since his death, and now I'm the only one left who remembers what it was like for us. And all I can do is write it down and hope that someone else who's fallen in love will understand.