I lost my virginity when I was thirteen years old.   Her name was Caroline, a really cool seventeen year old who used to wear vintage cardigan sweaters with only one button done up (the second one down from the top.)


Caroline wasn’t in a clique but she had this air of independence, like she was completely content with herself. She also had a hot twentysomething boyfriend who drove an old Mercedes and wore fedoras. To me she had it all. So I start copying her sweater-look and we became friends.  (Luckily she was cool enough to see imitation as a form of flattery, and didn’t mind having a younger friend.)


One day after school Caroline invites me to her house; an amazing Arts and Crafts bungalow in the old part of town (a far cry from the 70s suburban split level I called home.)  We hang out in her “studio” a small room in the basement full of scarves and interesting pictures, Sitting close together on the floor cushions, Caroline shows me drawings from her sketchbook then forces me to recite some of my poetry (squeezing my leg at all the good parts.)  That’s when her hot boyfriend arrives and Caroline asks if I’d like to join them for dinner.  I shake my head, not wanting to impose,  but she insists.  Caroline goes upstairs and “Robert”  lights some candles, which impresses me (in my house, candles were for Thanksgiving and Christmas- this was just another  Tuesday night!). As Robert plays a silly song on Caroline’s guitar I quickly realize I’m in love with both of them.


Moments later Caroline comes back with three beautiful ceramic bowls each filled with this gorgeous- looking vegetarian chilli  on a bed of brown rice.  It’s sprinkled with green stuff (coriander, a herb I hadn’t met yet) and cheddar cheese.  She proudly says she made it herself,  which blows my mind (up until then, just like sex, I thought cooking was for was adults only.)


As I devour the chilli, exotic flavours dancing in my mouth, Robert gives Caroline a deep long kiss. I try not to stare, but I do.


Okay, technically I didn’t lose my virginity that night, but I did get rid of my old fashioned idea of cooking: that it was a boring thing for stay-at-home Moms. No. Cooking was sexy, and, in Caroline’s case, it could get you some pretty amazing cock.

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