To K: An Open Letter to my Happy Hour

Subject: To K: An Open Letter to my Happy Hour
Date: 16 Sep 2020

Dear K,

Happy Hour is all we’ll ever be. I know that now. But two years ago inside that speakeasy, you filled my heart with generous servings of untold stories and cocktails of now broken promises. You promised me we'd hunt the best-tasting coffee, fly to see the Festival of Colors, board hot air balloons, discover hidden bars, and make all our dreams come to life. It was so easy to get drunk in those statements when you’re in love. It was easier to get lost in minutes because you’d think that 60 is more than enough. It was easiest to make rash judgment when your brain tricks you into believing that ‘we’ meant the two of us, together. Trust me, Happy Hour isn’t all that happy when it’s about to end… when it’s your real happiness that’s about to end.

We had to take the check. I didn’t know that the bill would come with an even glaring reality check. But it did. You did. After a meaningless hug, you stepped inside your train bound somewhere else. I stood there without a destination, confused and intoxicated.

I was at war with myself that night. I was struggling between waking life and living forever inside that dream of finally having you next to me. I knew not to be caught inside bubbles that are too good to be true. But I couldn’t let go of that little voice saying, “what if this time, it’s really you?”

I knew the hangover would be bad and I thought I could handle it. I knew well enough not to drink more than you can handle but I thought big girls hardly ever cry. I knew that crying would bring headaches but I thought heartbreaks are far worse. I thought I knew exactly what heartbreaks felt like. But breaking up our 10-year friendship turned out to be one of the hardest wars my heart ever had to defend.

I came back to the bar alone. Everything felt the same except you weren’t there. The bartender asked for you. It suddenly felt real; so maybe it wasn’t just my dream? Someone else remembered and was quick to ask if we’ve broken up. I knew it was easy to say yes. I knew I wanted to say yes if only to justify being this broken. If things were up to me, I’d tell the world about us. But I said ‘no, we were never together’ and ordered just one drink. There’s no point in rushing, in being reckless, and in getting drunk if it’s no longer Happy Hour.