The couple thing started before we were even together. On the first day of our trip, I called The Firefighter from MSP (Minneapolis/St Paul Airport) to tell him, “If we’re going to keep track of how many times we’re mistaken as a couple, the count is already at two – as people from check-in and airport security just asked about my ‘boyfriend in Seattle’. And you’re not even with me yet.”

He laughed at that. “Ah, MollyE, why fight it.”

So we let people assume what they wanted, without trying to convince them otherwise. Actually, with our behavior, we only reinforced those erroneous assumptions.

Putting the whole hooking-up thing aside, we acted COUPLEY. We HELD HANDS. I would lie on his stomach when we would read in bed. He’d plant small kisses on my neck when walking behind me. I mindlessly scratched his back when waiting on a bench for a tour to start. My knee grew accustomed to having his hand on it. We FROLICKED in the ocean at night. BARF, right?

What’s worse than being COUPLEY: being a HAPPY couple. We ENJOYED each other.

Puke.

What.

The Eff.

And we’ve always been close, with little to no adherence to personal space, so our behavior felt natural. Just odd when I would step back and overthink it. Sharing midnight tiramisu = acceptable friends activity. Having his hands on my waist at the bar = COUPLEY. Which sent off the bells in my head: WARNING! NOT A FRIENDS ACTIVITY. I rarely allow myself to indulge in the couple stuff, probably because the majority of my guy friends are kept securely in the arms-length friends category. He’s the exception, apparently.

It was good.

I only see him twice a year, if that. So it was what it was for the time that it was. The end.

**Stories (and pics, too!) to follow – but I wanted to cover the boy-stuff first. Because that’s what’s been on my mind.

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