“It’s funny,” I told myself, “how we get attached to things and people we never knew we needed in our lives.” And I held my hands high and expected the Heavens to pour their grace over me.
My palms were sweating, my breathing failed to reach its average pace, and a weird smirk must have betrayed my thoughts. I got in return a warm smile, one that, in hindsight, I failed to read as a kind of masked sorrow. And yet, that one moment meant everything to me. That moment was the happiness that only a bite into the forbidden fruit could have delivered.
I felt guilty, and yet I couldn’t hide my excitement, and I sensed chills rushing through my every pore and building into goosebumps.
“Close your eyes!” I was told.
I did, but one rebel eyelid felt the need to spark betrayal.
“Close them! Both of them!”
I finally gave in, and my darkness made room for bouncing thoughts that were poking the unknown. “Why is it taking so long? How would it feel? Should I be scared? Would others be envious? Happy? Would I truly be as happy as I hoped I would?”
Then a soft touch cut short my thoughts’ racket — smooth bliss.
I took a deep breath, gathered all my nerves into a tight knot in the back of my throat, and my wide-open eyes shot out a small tear that failed to hide my body’s overcharged-with-emotions state.
“This is how love feels like; this is how others feel like daily and take it all too much for granted.”
Stupid eyes failing to keep my tears in—I cried.
“Are you OK? Are you happy?”
I was only able to nod, or maybe I mumble something that must have translated into a demand for hugs. I got one right away, and my mom kept me in there for what felt like an eternity.
“Remember, you’re only allowed to wear them in the house!”
My sobbing ‘uh-huh’ transformed itself into a smile larger than life.
“Can I try them on?”
Five seconds, 327 milliseconds later, I was wearing my first blue jeans. First-ever. The first I saw in reality. The first I touched. The first I revered.
Back as a child, in a communist life, where blue jeans were the “westerner’s propaganda and forbidden items in our beloved society,” I wore my first ones. I begged for something like that ever since I remembered seeing them in a cowboy movie. I dreamed about them. I made up scenes in which I was the envy of the whole village. I worshipped them and gave them a life beyond their apparel rank.
A friend of a friend of a friend of my parents was smuggling over the Hungarian border whatever he could get his hands on.
My first blue jeans!
I loved them more than words can describe. I even liked the huge flowers that were covering my buttocks.
“Cowboy’s flowers,” I told myself.
I didn’t even care when despite my mother’s warning, wearing them outside delivered me a swift reply:
“Those are girls’ pants!”
...My first blue jeans. My first love.