Jennie’s strawberry blonde hair seemed to attract the wrong kind of guy, so she’d given up on them. She focused on her dancing and sculpting, her two passions in life, and spent free time making small terrariums out of old, useless objects. Her most recent creation, a small vine in an old light bulb, was a hit the last time she had the girls over for sushi. They each wanted one, but it would take Jennie another year to go through that many light bulbs.
Her luck with men seemed to be common knowledge in her life. Her friends, neighbors, even acquaintances seemed to know about it. Acquaintance meaning her associate, August, who sold some of her sculptures in a small gallery just down the street from the vegetarian restaurant where she now sat waiting for, according the August, the “Man of her dreams.”
Jennie had always said she wanted to marry rich. This man was a vet. She didn’t even know how much a vet made. Was he August’s vet? Did she actually bring those little black rats to a vet when they were sick? Jennie shuddered a bit but couldn’t complain; her work seemed to sell fairly well at the little gallery that smelled a bit like a pet shop. But hey, the income padded the small checks she got from the theater where she danced, so she couldn’t complain. Sure, August was a bit of a flake, but she’d known her since college, where she’d excelled and August had eventually dropped out.
The clock over the bar read 7:04. With the schedule Jennie had to keep, combining dance practice, staying fit, her clay studio time and the small events a human being needs to survive, she was a busy woman and stuck strictly to a schedule. If this man, this veterinarian, didn’t show up soon, she would order without him. She had no problem eating alone in a restaurant; she’d done it plenty of times before and could easily do so once again.
The waiter approached. “Can I get you something to drink?”
7:06. “Yes, I’ll have a glass of the house wine. Red.”
He nodded and walked away. She checked her phone for texts. Nothing. After a quick check of her purse, she found the small notebook she kept where she transcribed ideas, either for sculpture or terrariums, and started a sketch of an old kitchen jar from the 1970s she bought at a secondhand store last week and scribbled light drawings of the plants she would fill it with. The waiter brought the wine and she checked the clock.
She sipped the wine, checked her phone again, and went back to the sketch. Once she was satisfied with that, she flipped back a few pages to some drawings she’d made of a homeless man in the park the other day and worked on them a bit, perfecting them for a sculpture project she had in mind.
The waiter walked by and she flagged him down to order her dinner.