My sense of confidence is completely back, I think.  While in Las Vegas this year; I went to eat lunch by myself while HUD was tending to his work responsibilities, and the entire reason for our trip. It was lunch time, and after walking around the mall/casino of the hotel looking for a restaurant where I was in the mood to have lunch; I walked into a busy restaurant/bar all alone, and instead of asking the hostess for a table, I asked where the bar was (I could not see it, due to the fact that I am very short). I have always preferred the bar seating anyway, but I thought maybe I could watch TV and not be bothered by anyone.

The hostess informed me that the bar area was directly in front of me; I rolled my eyes, and gave a look of “DUH” and I thanked the girl. I then started walking toward the bar area. As I was looking around the bar for a place to sit, preferably one where no one would be prone to chit-chat with me (as with every thing else, I must have my full focus and concentration even when EATING, else I will just end up talking. I can not talk and eat…that is multi-tasking).

The bar area was full, too…I noticed three empty chairs. One of those seats was in between two men, and the other was beside a man. I chose the chair at the end of the bar, near the entrance to the kitchen. I decided on that seat because I would be less likely “hit on” or even chatted with.

Behind the bar, a 20-something guy came strolling out. I was immediately enamored with him, and could not get my manners to react to my brain telling my eyes to “look away.” He was short, he had dark hair, and his right arm was SLEEVED! That in itself was enough to make me stare at him.

He walked up to me sitting at the bar, handed me a menu, and asked if I wanted anything to drink. My insides fluttering, I was having a celebratory party in my head, because the extremely attractive man was my server.

Gaining control over myself; I ordered a Sprite (I could not fathom drinking alcohol before/at lunch–even in Vegas).  He got me a Sprite, and I looked over the lunch menu while he gave me time to decide what I wanted to order to eat.

When he returned, I told him what I wanted to order. I do not remember now (I chose to write this post one month after HUD’s and my trip to Vegas), but the two of us made small-talk. It was not even 2 minutes after we began talking that I mentioned HUD. I guess I just wanted to put up a “CAUTION” sign before he said/did anything.  I felt the need to let him know up front that I had a boyfriend, so I asked if he would help me talk my boyfriend into getting a sleeve.

After all, I’ve worked in the restaurant/ bartending business…I understand how bartenders are. And he was paying attention to me in the way I remembered guys looking at me when they are attracted. I did not want him to flirt…that in itself would have made me feel guilty.  Guilty, because HUD was working…HUD flew me to Vegas; we were staying in a nice room overlooking the strip because of him, but if I allowed this bartender to flirt with me, I would be disrespecting HUD.

The bartender’s name is Chris (“I guess I can’t win for losing,” is what ran through my mind. My favorite male names, are; “James,” and “Christopher/CHRIS,” and I once loved the name, “Arthur.”). Chris was incredibly professional, I could sense that he was wanting to talk to me…but, thank God I mentioned HUD immediately. As I was waiting for my order to come out of the kitchen; Chris was very professional and only talked to me occasionally…it was a good thing I mentioned HUD so quickly, I decided.

When I returned to the hotel room, and HUD came back in from working, he asked what I had done that day. I told him that I had ventured out of the hotel and went to eat…I also told HUD about the bartender with the sleeve…and as we were looking for somewhere to eat a couple of days later, HUD suggested we go to that restaurant.  I remember doing a remote for the restaurant when I worked in radio, and I thought, “GROSS!” I did not remember that I was not impressed with the food the day I went alone, but then it hit me, why HUD wanted to go to that restaurant (he will never admit it now).

Chris was working…he looked at me with HUD, and he did not act as if he remembered me. I thought it was because when he met me, I had styled my hair curly, yet this time it was styled straight. The more I tried to get eye contact when he neared us…the more I sensed that he was avoiding my eyes purposely.

HUD was also being nonchalant about meeting my new “friend”/ acquaintance. It was actually a little annoying; and at the same time, it made me feel the way I once did when I was young girl  and a cocky, erm, confident, version of the woman I am now.  I could not get Chris to look in my direction; so I simply got off of my barstool, and “confronted” him as he walked by us.

I said, “Chris…do you remember me? I was in here alone the other day, and I sat at the end of the bar.” Chris smiled at me, and said that he did remember who I am. I said something akin to, “I was wondering, because you seem to be avoiding me! This man is my unofficial fiancee, and I want you to convince him to get a sleeve! Remember?” Chris said that he did remember. I responded with something about me not bringing my boyfriend in so he could try to talk him into getting a sleeve, and that it was my man’s idea to come grab something to eat here because everywhere in the mall was covered up!

I went and sat back next to HUD…Chris came over to where we were sitting at the bar a few minutes later. I forget what he said to HUD, but he did tell him that HUD should get a sleeve because his girlfriend (me) LOVES them. HUD said, “Okay”, then that was the end of it.  Chris walked off, HUD changed the subject. I know it is silly, but I felt like the confident Brandy I was before the brain injury. It was nice…

HUD is not going to get a sleeve. *sigh* Even if his soon-to-be wife LOVES sleeves/tattoos on men.  Well, HUD is perfect for me/to me in most everything…I’m not going to complain. But, I am not going to stop mentioning it to him either. *I jest…*


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