A Second Helping
I had my second date with Mr. Tall.
Although, I wouldn’t call it a date, necessarily, more like (using Mr. Tall’s words) “An Adventure”.
I met him in Grand Central station by the clock in the middle. I had been running all over the whole day, having just come from an audition (that went really well!!!) so I was on a high from that. He greeted me with a smile and eyes that said: Great! You’re here. I can’t wait for you to see what I’ve got up my sleeve!
He took me to the Juniors on the lower level and over a Tuna Melt, a Grilled Cheese and some diet coke we caught up a little as to what we had both been up to the past week and a half. He would look at his cell phone every once in a while and smiling say: Just checking on the time for the train.
Me: Train? Where are we going?
Him: Do you really want to know?
Me: … No.
We had some time to kill after dinner so with my hand in his (WHAT!? already? I barely know this guy!) we walked through the terminal and up to Campell’s apartment, which, Mr. Tall filled me in on, used to be some super-duper rich guys crash pad whenever he came in to the city. Now it’s an old fashioned, Mad Men Style saloon featuring a very intricately decorated ceiling and men in white coat-tails who ferry expensive looking cocktails all over the dimly lit, cigarette smoke lacking room. I almost wished there was a way cigarette smoke was available there, the ambiance was so perfect for it, as if, through the theoretical gloom I could have looked over at the bar and seen the Rat Pack all hanging there drinking their Old Fashioned’s and talking about Marilyn Monroe.
Mr. Tall’s eyes gleamed when he looked up from his cell phone again.
Him: Ok, Let’s go catch the train.
Me: Where are we going?
Me: What? What’s there??
Him: Do you really want to know?
Using his dancer like precision I was guided over to the track with a big Metro North Train waiting to take us, I don’t know where.
“Do we have tickets?” I asked.
Mr. Tall smiled. “Of course. I already got them.”
The train ride was a little less than an hour. Tall and I chatted the whole way about regional dialects and sayings. I laughed a few times at some New York-isms he said he’s noticed here (Tall’s from Colorado) like “You know what I mean?” and “whuddare ya up to?” I showed him my new headshots and explained the difference between commercial shots and Legit shots.
We pulled in to Tarrytown and Mr. Tall’s mischevous smile came back.
Him: Ok. So, do you know anything about Sleep Hollow?
Me: Oh my god. NO WAY.
Him: And a certain legend of Sleep Hollow?
Me: HaHA! Yes! I do!
Him: Good. I found something I think you might like. We just need to get a cab to take us there.
Within 10 minutes we were standing outside the Sleep Hollow Haunted Maze. Mr. Tall had taken me to a haunted house tour.
We were the last group in.
I’ve been to a haunted house once before in Louisville. My friend David took me after a Dracula show for Halloween. We were also the last group in when we went. The cool thing about being the last group is all the actors who are dressed as ghouls follow you in the end and pick on you the most. I can imagine for some people that would not be ideal. For me, however: BRING IT. I screamed at the top of my lungs for every little thing I could. I laughed and shouted and ran and jumped and clung to Mr. Tall like a rat in a rain storm. The end of the tour was a visit from the Headless Horseman himself, and the scream that came out of me might have curdled milk. It was exhilarating. The production value of that tour was outstanding.
At the end Mr. Tall asked if I enjoyed myself.
Me: Um, YES!
Tall: Good! Me too. I’ve wanted to come up and do that for a while.
Me: I can’t believe you put all this together! Oh my god!
Tall: It was fun.
We looked over ghost stories and “Legends of…” anthologies in the gift shop. We had a little time to kill before the next train. I told Tall about the trip I took to Waverly Hills Sanitorium in Louisville (One of the creepiest places I have ever been). Tall admitted he loved a good ghost story. I said I did in context, when I’m not in the middle of the woods somewhere.
After the cab dropped us back at the train station I found myself dead tired (no pun intended). I leaned into Mr. Tall’s chest and rested my head on his shoulder. Oh my god, I thought. We’re one of those people. The people I’ll see on platforms. The one’s that seem as if they are just one being they are so close. Tall’s arms circled me with a protective warmth and I closed my eyes for a minute and imagined what this would feel like all the time. Oh, it’s so warm and safe…
On the train ride back we were more quiet and reserved. I was getting really tired and had to be up for a film shoot in Connecticut the following morning. Tall noticed the vacant stares.
Him: Look at you. Thinking about what you have to do tomorrow, huh?
Me: ha. Yeah.
Him: Long day?
Him: You can put your head on my shoulder if you want to sleep.
Me: Who are you, and where can I find more of your kind? That offer is very tempting… Thanks, but I’ll tough it out. Keep you company on the ride home.
Mr. Tall walked me to the 7 train so I could get back out to Queens. I had a flutter in my chest. What do we do? Kiss? Does he expect something from me? Uh… Why am I so scared? Am I just going to get hurt if I get too involved in this?
A 7 train pulled in as we were entering the station. I wished the train could have waited. I don’t exactly know what I wanted to do to Mr. Tall so I turned to wish him good bye and before I had time to think, he pulled me in to a kiss, just for a second, then gently pushed me toward the train. I ran on board and found a seat. He waited across the platform for the 7 to take him to the West Side. I expected the train doors to close and move, like some fairy tale ending to some fairy tale date, but promptly spent a few awkward minutes watching the car doors open and shut as the conductor had a Door-fight with stragglers trying to board the train. Each time the doors opened again I smiled and playfully pretended I didn’t see Mr. Tall. He caught my eye several times and smiled back. So much for riding off into the sunset, but this is almost as good… I waved goodbye as the train lurched forward and carried me off to Queens. See you soon, Mr. Tall. I tried to repress a squeal of delight at the thought of that.
October 24, 2011 at 1:14 am by Natalie Allen