Conveniently, Jo’s Coffee sat just a few blocks across the South Congress Bridge from Kleiner, Mayberry, Steinberg & Rosenwhizz, the well-respected law firm where Ally worked as a paralegal. As she walked across the bridge dividing North and South Austin, Ally looked down at shimmering Lady Bird Lake. What a perfect morning to be on the water. There was a slight breeze, and in late June, the Austin heat was still tolerable – only just. Ally shuddered to think about the high temperatures the summer had in store for them.
Below, she could see several paddle boarders; they looked like stick figures from where she stood. She wondered what Greg would look like on a paddle board? Most likely bronzed, buff and gorgeous. Then she pictured the two of them in a kayak together, she tan and svelt; Greg, handsome and muscular, like something straight out of a J. Crew catalog. She peeked into her purse for the hundredth time to make sure his declaration of love was still there. When she saw the crinkled edge of his card, her stomach did a flip.
What she really wanted was for this relationship to work. At twenty-five, Ally knew she was still young, but it seemed as if many of her friends, especially her Texas girlfriends, had already gotten married. She longed to be in their shoes, to have a husband, to be running with a baby girl in a sport stroller, quickly shedding the baby weight…she caught herself. First things first: Why couldn’t she just get a guy to commit? Wasn’t she pretty? Didn’t she have what guys wanted? She would even go so far as calling herself…traditional.
Ally thought back; did she make a mistake by choosing to go to Notre Dame? She believed those Catholic boys would be all about commitment, and they were – but to football and lacrosse. Plus, northerners seemed to settle down much later than their southern counterparts. She suspected that her dad had something to do with her singledom status —why didn’t he encourage her or her sisters to settle down with a nice teddy bear of a man, as she’d heard her friends’ fathers say? Instead, he was always rambling about how important it was for a young woman to find herself before she could truly know another. What did that mean, anyway? And the opposite pressure from her mother certainly didn’t help—she was supposed to have already pushed out two babies on that woman’s clock.Pages: