Getting into the culinary arts program in Boston was one of the best things that ever happened to me. As soon as I got the acceptance letter, my mom got me drunk, and we went online and looked for apartments in the city close to my school. We sent a bunch of obnoxious emails and made a lot of late night phone calls. But the next morning we got a call back for a really nice place that was just down the street from my school.
For a moment, my mom was really confused about the apartment hunting. I was afraid she was going to back out now that she was sober. But she said even though the apartment was pricey she’d done the same thing for Paige when she went off to college, so it was only fair.
We went to check it out the very next day. It was a really awesome one bedroom place with a full sized kitchen and a balcony. And I got to move in right after the first and right before my first day of school.
On my first day, I had to wear a white smock with white pants and an embarrassing little chef hat. But I didn’t care. I was actually going to be learning stuff I couldn’t learn from the TV. Not just learning from a steak house and figuring things out as I went along, but actual training. And I couldn’t wait to get started.
My first class was in the afternoon. I was told we weren’t going to be doing any real cooking right away, but we had to wear the uniforms anyway. I showed up early because I was thrilled to be away from home for the first time and to be actually doing something with my life. If I’d known I could get into cooking school, I would have applied in high school instead of switching from McDonalds to old Penis’s.
When I got there, only a small group had congregated outside of the room I was assigned to. They were all wearing the same uniforms as me, but none of them were wearing their hats. So I immediately took mine off. I didn’t want to call attention to myself just yet. I’d gotten rid of the brace face years ago, but I still didn’t seem to get along with people. I liked people, but most people didn’t like me.
Besides, I’d seen the group at orientation, and they all seemed really cool. They were sitting there slouched as if they’d rather be anywhere else. They twirled their hats on their fingers and laughed as if they’d known each other for years. I knew right away that I wouldn’t fit in with them. For some reason, I pictured this class being much more—well, like me.
I took a seat on the farthest bench from the door and waited patiently for class to start. I checked my cell phone, so I could look like I was busy and had friends. But no one ever texted me besides my mother and Caitlyn, and sometimes her brother just so he could complain about my decision to leave Penis’s for Fancy Ass university. But Caitlyn was in class. My dad wouldn’t answer. My brother didn’t like me. Sometimes Paige texted me, but even that was rare. I thought about texting her just so my ringtone would go off and I didn’t have to stare at my blank phone screen. But the likelihood of her texting me back right away was very low. So I just played a game until we were called into the room.
There were six tables in the room. I took the one at the very back and waited for the rest of the class to show up. Each table had its own small kitchen, complete with ovens, stoves, and working sinks. I thought about going to talk to my instructor but she was reading, and I didn’t want to bother her.
When the class started to fill in, some people had no choice but to sit at the same table as me. A girl with purple hair took one side and a boy who paid no attention to where he was sitting since he was absorbed in his phone, took the other.
“Hi, I’m Piper,” I told them.
“Hi, I’m Violet,” the purple haired girl said. Then she laughed like this was the funniest thing in the world. “Just kidding. My name is Jaime.” I nodded.
“Oh, cool.” The boy didn’t answer. I guessed he didn’t hear me.
We actually ended up making basic sugar cookies. Our instructor wanted to make sure that we at least knew something, and cookies were quick and fun.
Jaime and the boy, Dustin it turns out, were actually kind of fun to work with. Jaime cracked a lot of jokes that I actually understood. Mostly because they were kind of nerdy and she liked the Food Network like I did. And when I made a casual comment about how I’d always wanted to dye my hair pink, she immediately got excited and said she’d help me do it.
Even though Dustin was quiet, he seemed to know his way around our small kitchen. We worked together in a team to make our sugar cookies, and they came out amazing. But we were only allowed to split one cookie between the three of us since we were going to frost them the next day. But Dustin let me have his piece, and I thought that was really sweet of him.
And he was kind of cute too, but I didn’t want to say anything about it because the last guy I’d had a crush on totally stomped on my heart.
Smol chapter. I like to think that most of my stories take place in the same universe. So Jaime is a character from another story that I haven’t put up yet. Unfortunately, she didn’t end up being a huge character in this one for some reason, even though that was my intention. But her story is one of my favorites and I’ve been meaning to work on it.