It goes without saying that making friends as an adult, especially in suburban America, is not as easy as one would think. At least that’s the case for me. Since moving here to Long Island, I have made one new good friend, and I consider that quite the accomplishment, especially since we weren’t introduced by other people or some other easy path to aquaintancy (I made that word up). I met Michelle on the commuter train we both take to Manhattan every day around the same time. It was a slow courtship, I didn’t want to scare her off. But now, I think we are on solid friend territory. We do things together like take coooking classes and watch award shows, which surely constitutes a friendship.
For some months Michelle and I have noticed another woman that we think we would like to add to our train friendship. Often we sit near her, and she is always dressed in something fabulous, and can really carry some good accessories. I particularly covet a beautiful ring she has of polished pink quartz set in a chunky silver band. I first noticed her because of that ring and the distinct feeling I wanted to rip it off her finger for myself. You could say it was love at first sight.
There are two rows of chairs in every train car that face each other, perfect for conversation, and often Michelle and I find ourselves sitting across from the fabulous woman. And this past week it happened: we talked to her. Her name is Paulina, she is roughly our age (mid-late 30s), originally from Ecuador, and living on Long Island since she was a teenager. Full of energy and fun to talk to– I think I am on the road to having a second friend here. Sweet! Getting from casual train-appropriate small talk to that first “friend date” is so tenuous, though. I don’t want to just blurt out, heyyouwannahavebrunchwithmethisweekend? In some kind of desperation. She is cool, well traveled, and sophisticated. I gotta time it just right.