Jana is my German neighbor who lives upstairs. She is tall, skinny, and a bit boyish, with short-cut hair that randomly sticks out at all angles without any assistance from gel. She is also studious, quiet, vegetarian, and loves mexican food. We technically have one class together, but it is so large, we never really see each other. Instead, we tend to see each other at the grocery store and on Saturday nights, when she comes down and joins us for a little R&R&Mexican.
Today, however, she came down a bit early.
“There’s a party tonight, at the Students Union,” she said, looking up from her work. “You should go.”
“But I don’t want to go,” I replied.
“Parties are good for you; they let you meet new people and have fun.”
“Why don’t you go, then?”
“Because I don’t like parties.”
“I don’t either.”
“You should go.”
“No, you should.”
We laughed, then awkwardly stared at each other.
“Why don’t you like parties?”
“They’re too loud and crowded. I can never hear anyone. Why don’t you?”
“About the same, and I don’t smoke.”
“It might be different here.”
We considered this.
“You should go,” Jana said again. “I would go, but I don’t want to go alone.”
“So if I go, you’ll go?”
She considered this, then nodded curtly.
And that, my friends, is the story of how Jana and I ended up at a rather loud and noisy party in a pub on the second floor of the Students Union, where all the snacks and drinks were overpriced and we knew no one. It was so crowded we could barely get inside, so we stood for a while on the balcony, looking in over people’s heads, and yelling at each other that the music was too loud. Finally, I gave up.
“We should go home,” I yelled.
“And do what?” Jana said. I missed the “And do” part of the question.
“We should go home!”
“And do what?”
“Make brownies. And put raspberries in them.”
Jana nodded. We turned and walked out, savoring the quiet of the outdoors and hoping the dull roar in our ears would disappear. It did (eventually). The sun was beginning to set when we coded into the apartment complex, and we chatted as we slowly pulled together our brownies, mashed raspberries, and then dumped them all in. We apparently put in a few too many, because the brownies never set, even long after they were supposed to be done, but we solved this by grabbing two long handled spoons, settling down at the table, and slowly eating the tray as we talked and read.
Close to midnight, Cait and Ann came home, and popped their heads into the kitchen to see why the light was on. Apparently they, too, had been at the party, but they had actually managed to get in.
“How was it?” Jana asked.
“Too loud and too crowded to talk or dance, and all the drinks were overpriced,” Ann said, shrugging. “Hey! did you make brownies?”
“Not really…” we indicated at the container. Ann sighed.
“Oh well. Sounds like you had a good evening.”
Yes, yes we did.