I’m in Prague on business. I’m fitting myself into a tuxedo which is snug. I look into the wide mirror and notice, for what I’m sure is not the first time, the creases on my face. I think back to the first time I went to see a symphony.

I’m taken aback. I sit on the hotel bed, springs trying to bounce me off a bit too much.

I think back to a boy and girl who loved each other a whole lot, and their walk to the symphony. She was a cello player, trying to culture the boy, like bacteria in a petri dish. He had no idea what he had to learn but was just glad to have the chance to follow the girl to the concert.

They were standing outside, rain dripping all around them, rain matting the girl’s hair. The girl tried to light a cigarette, rain drenched the cigarette.

“You really shouldn’t smoke.” He said, as he led her to the awning and lit the cigarette.

“I know.” She ashed her smoke.

“Then why do you?” He looked into her eyes.

“It’s just something to do, you know?” Her eyes were pleading.

“Something to forget we won’t see each other soon?”

She smiled.

“Give me one of those,” the boy said.

He put a lonely cigarette in his mouth and lit it.

“It tastes like your lips.”

The girl grabbed the smoke from the boy’s lips and said, “Kiss me instead.”

He did, earnestly.