She got on the streetcar and I noticed her immediately. She was wearing a black American Apparel hoodie, one size too small so an inch of skin was exposed above her blue jeans. Her jeans were so tight they looked painted on, yet still looked comfortable to wear. They fit her perfectly, outlining the countour of slim thigh, calf, and round ass. Her feet were clad in a pair of blue canvas shoes with white soles and laces, similar to Vans. Her black hoodie was zipped down to the middle of her chest exposing pronounced collarbones. The skin visible in the unzipped vee of her hoodie and above her waist created the illusion that if she were to unzip it all the way down to her navel, I’d find her wearing nothing but a lace bra beneath. Her hair was long, brown, past her shoulders, and swept to the right, so it slightly covered her right eye. Occasionally she would run her fingers through it in attempt to keep it behind her ear. Her eyes were big and light brown, her skin the colour of raw almonds. Her lips were pouty and glossed. She smiled only once, as the streetcar came to a sudden stop and a woman nearly fell on her. She had pointy canine teeth, immaculately white, and her smile was infectious. I imagined seeing that grin, turning towards me in my kitchen as she passed me a mug of green tea. I imagined that smile greeting me every waking day of my life.
I stole constant glances at her as we rode the streetcar across town on Queen Street. I tried to place her ethnicity, at first I believed maybe white and Vietnamese mix, but looking up at her big brown eyes and then getting a second glimpse of her ass I decided she was of Latin descent, perhaps a Brazilian father with a Canadian mom. That slight flash of skin above the top of her jeans was a beautiful brown, the colour my skin could only become if left to bake on a Central American beach for months, but a hue she keeps all year round. She wore no rings, her ears were unpierced, she wasn’t hiding her eyes behind oversized sunglasses, and she did not seem to be wearing any makeup, except for the faint lip gloss. She stood the entire trip across town, and what struck me was that she was not listening to an iPod, nor did she pull a cellphone out of her leather purse to text a friend or make a phone call. This is a gesture so characteristic of her “type” of girl — the need for distraction, for constant communication, and the fact she resisted this endeared her to me even more. To place her age proved difficult, but if I had to guess I would say in between 19-24. I hoped it closer to the latter, but fear her startling beauty was partly due to the fact that she was just stepping into it.
When I ride the streetcar I always try and guess when a person is going to get off. I look at an old Chinese woman, and assume Spadina, I look at a clean shaven man in a suit, consumed with the screen of his Blackberry and I assume Bay Street. With her, I guessed Yonge Street, which is a safe bet, as it leads to various subway transfers and the many shops of The Eaton Centre. I was right. As we reached Yonge, she took her leave of me and as she did my breath stopped. It stopped because I knew I would never see her again. I knew that those waking moments with her next to me or those delightful domestic moments drinking tea together on my couch — with her smiling her perfect grin and her bright eyes shining with love — would never happen. The streetcar continued its slow trek east and I let out a lengthy sigh, stupidly feeling as if I’d gone through the beginning and end of a relationship that was never meant to be. Sigh.