One night, back when Danny was still living in Gainesville and regularly making the 4-hour trek down to visit me, we devised a mission to find some really good pizza. We looked up a few places and found one we thought we'd have dinner at before heading to the movies that night.
On the way over I remember thinking that I'd never seen a restaurant where the map was sending us, but the reviews sounded tempting and it was really close to the theater so I silently willed it to exist. As it turns out it did exist...as a delivery only shop with absolutely no tables, let alone enough room to swing around and mash a box of pizza out the door.
I was at a loss for what to do; between the limited time we had before the movie and my own ravenous desire to put away several giant slices I grappled for a solution. While I racked my brain for nearby restaurants Danny ordered an extra-large mushroom and spinach pizza with wings, took my hand and headed across the parking lot towards my old Grand Cherokee. A few boosts and a little balance later we were having a full on picnic on the roof of my car.
It was our own little table for two, complete with ambient street lamp lighting, great conversation and open-air views. It’s one of my favorite dates and best memories from the beginning of our relationship, and it’s a true testament to Danny’s ability to make the best of any situation.
I found these photos when I was sorting through folders on my old computer and couldn’t believe how simultaneously close and far that time felt from where I now sit. Sometimes I think relationships don’t travel in a linear path, but that they instead loop around through time and space, expanding and diffusing in several coats over our own memories and history.
That night on the roof of my car we were so new, so gingerly wound and loosely assembled. Today, Danny, you are richly threaded into my history, and for that I consider myself very lucky.
Happy Birthday, I’m so glad that you exist.