All of that happened a year ago, but now it’s the beginning of a new year. Thank God for that. I think I’ve been asked about a million times what my resolutions are. The answer’s simple—make better choices. Easier said than done, I know, especially when it comes to chocolate and working too much. I need to make better choices in general, in all aspects of life. However, I think I’m going to hold off on that until after New Year’s Day. It’s the first New Year’s I’ve ever had off work. I want to make the best of it and drink to my heart’s content and eat whatever I want. I even packed a bag of clothes so I could stay over at Emerson’s. The last thing I want to do is walk home in the middle of the night in frigid temperatures.
My phone rings and I fumble to get it out of my coat pocket. I look to see who it is, and Emerson’s name is on the screen.
“Hey,” I answer.
“Hey, girl. You on your way?”
The snow feels like it’s getting deeper. “Yep. My legs are getting a workout. I hate to see what it’s going to be like when I try to walk home tomorrow morning.” It usually only takes me about ten minutes to walk to her apartment building, but I’ve only made it past one block, and it’s been over ten minutes.
Emerson giggles. “Callum and I will walk with you. I, for one, will need the exercise. You wouldn’t believe how much food I have here. We’re going to be pigging out all night.”
My stomach growls. “Can’t wait. I’ll probably eat more than I drink.”
“You and me both. I’ll start my diet in a couple of days.”
I pick up the pace and make it past the second block. “Same. Although I’m not going to call it a diet. I’ve decided my only resolution this year is to make better choices.”
She snickers. “Hopefully, I can help you with that. Callum has a guy from work coming over tonight to meet you. Since you don’t like any of his friends, we figured it was time to change it up.”
I shake my head and laugh. “When are you two going to give it up?”
“When you find happiness again,” she retorts. “Callum works with some nice guys at the station. I could see you getting it on with a police officer. Just think of what you could do with those handcuffs.”
“Oh my God, Em. You need help, you know that?” I’ve never dated a police officer before, but it could be pretty interesting. I have to give her credit. Emerson’s a good friend.
“That I do,” she agrees, “but you love me. Oh, and speaking of loving me, do you mind doing me a huge favor?”
“Sure, what’s up?”
“We need more beer, Callum didn’t get enough the other day, but I do have our wine. Do you mind picking some up since you pass the store on your way here?”
I see the store up ahead, and luckily, it’s open. “No problem. I’m almost there. Do you know what you want?”
She sighs. “No clue. You know I don’t drink that crap. I’m a wine and vodka girl.” So am I.
“All right, I’ll see what I can find,” I say, “but tell Callum if the beer sucks it’s his fault he didn’t get enough.”
“Will do.” She giggles again. “Be careful out there and I’ll see you when you get here.”
We hang up and I trudge the rest of the way through the snow to the store. I open the door and it’s vacant, but the heat feels amazing against my face. I’m too frozen to push my hood back so I keep it on my head. There’s a young guy at the customer service desk and he nods at me as I walk past him. Everyone else was smart enough to stay inside during a snowstorm. I walk over to the beer aisle and there’s a worker buffing the floors and another man standing by the beer, looking at the different brands. He’s just as bundled up as I am.
Taking a deep breath, I glance over all the different beers. I try to look at the selection in front of the man, but I don’t want to invade his space so I stick to what’s in front of me. Callum likes different types of beer and not the usual Budweiser or Corona. That’s what makes this so difficult. He always picks out unusual flavors. One time, he had a fixation on a peanut butter and jelly beer. I tried it and it really did have a peanut butter taste.
“All right, let’s see,” I say quietly, perusing all the different specialty beers. The man beside me tenses as if he’s standing beside a lunatic talking to herself. Oh wait, I was. I’m pretty sure it’s not the craziest thing he’ll be witnessing tonight.