A dozen beautiful red roses were delivered to my house, and I was shocked to learn they were from one of my good friends at school. I had no clue that he liked me that way. I thanked him for the flowers and explained that I had a steady boyfriend who went to a different college. Apparently, I don’t talk much about Lou because he didn’t know I was dating anyone.

Vinny promoted me to the front desk at the hotel. I absolutely love my job and have so much fun that it hardly feels like work. Bruce and I usually work the same hours, and spend the entire time talking and joking around. We are about as different as night and day, but he is quickly becoming my closest friend and we go to work early just to hang out before our shift.

Because I committed to making weekly savings deposits in that joint account, I had to borrow some money from my sister to make the last payment on the cruise. It’s just a timing issue; I will pay her back before we sail. I did not admit to Lou that I needed to get a loan, and I did not ask my parents for help. My dad is adamantly against loaning anyone money, especially family. His position is that he will end up being screwed by someone he trusts, and he will resent them for the rest of his life. He would rather deal with the hard feelings the person has for him because he would not loan money in the first place. Since we all know it is his policy, nobody asks for a loan no matter what the reason or amount. I’ve been with my mother to the bank often and have seen that she’s made loans behind my father’s back to family from a hidden account. I didn’t want to ask her to give me a loan from that stash because those kinds of secrets are likely to backfire at some point in life, and I’d rather not deal with my father’s mopey punishment with the silent treatment.

I am still dealing with enough mopey punishment from Lou for going on the cruise. It is a sore subject that I avoid at all costs. It seems that the more I need the money to pay for the trip, the more expenses we need to cover for his car and other unexpected events, including rent deposit on his apartment for the summer. Lou will earn some money over break working as a handyman and repossessing cars, so we won’t be as dependent on my income.

Regardless of Lou’s opinion, and his failed attempts to guilt me into canceling or to screw up my financing, I am excited to be going on the trip. I plan to look into getting a job on the ship after graduation next year for a while before I transfer into a four-year college. Between my past hostess experience, my Hotel Management degree, and my front desk job, I should have a good shot at getting hired. I’m certainly not talking about any of those ideas out loud; I’ll cross that bridge when I come to it.