Maria met her husband one drunken night when they were both still in the Air Force. She worked in the hospital as a medical technician. Tim was a member of the Civil Engineers. He worked down in the bowels of the hospital, in the boiler plant. That’s why they both looked familiar to each other the night of the party.

Neither of them was old enough to drink, but that didn’t matter back then. There was always someone who was 21 that lived in the dorms. This person would be the one to get the keg after the hat was passed to collect the money. Someone would dismantle their stereo and bring it down to the pavilion from their room to DJ the party. The Civil Engineering dormitory was the best for parties. Since it was the engineers that built it 40 years prior. Besides the large pavilion, where the party took place, it was the only dorm on base that had a horseshoe pit, a sand volleyball court, and a barbecue grill. Yes, the CE dorm was where the parties were, and the hospital dorm was where all the girls were. Luckily, they were next to each other.

After a few songs and a couple of beers, Maria made the first move. “You work at the hospital don’t you?” Not waiting for an answer, she continued, “I’ve seen you there, but I’m not sure what you do.”

“I work down in the basement. In the boiler room,” he answered back.

They made small talk for a while, and when the DJ played a slow song, she asked him to dance.

“I don’t know how, really.”

“It’s a slow song,” she responded, “Everybody knows how to slow dance.” She took his cup out of his hand and set it next to hers on the table and dragged him to the dance floor. She put his hands on her hips and attempted to put hers around his neck but settled on his shoulders. There was quite a contrast in their height.

Tim held Maria as is he was holding a gallon bucket of paint that was missing the wire carrying handle, trying not to spill anything. He was surprised at how close his fingers came to touching each other.

There was no doubt about it; Tim moved like a “white boy.” Maria was ok with it. She just took control of the situation and pulled him close to her. She got him to stop merely just shifting his weight from one foot to the next and to move his hips a little bit in unison with hers.

He would have tried to kiss her then, but he was just so damn far away. It was a long way down to her lips. He was afraid the effort would draw too much attention them, and he could not have that, especially if he had gotten rejected.

The kiss did come, though, several beers later when neither of them cared what others would think. Instead of making the long journey down to Maria’s lips, he brought her lips to his. He effortlessly picked her up by her armpits like most people do their children, and brought her face to his. She instinctively wrapped her legs around his waist, her arms around his neck, and her lips onto his.

They stayed in this position all they way up to Tim’s second-floor dorm room.

When Maria woke up the next morning, she bashfully got down off the top bunk and got dressed. Tim’s roommate pretended to be asleep while he watched her dress. She left without saying goodbye.

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