Friday, April 27, 2007

Oh no!! I did it AGAIN...

I count myself as one of the Fortunate Few who has a handful of friends who are, without a doubt, the Salt of the Earth. I have asked around, and I understand that there are not very many people who are as lucky as I am to know a couple of people who, if I ever sent out a tiny email containing the single word, "help", would be on an airplane and standing on my doorstep in about six hours flat. That's saying something, considering that these people live in British Columbia, and I live in Ontario.

I met my best girlfriend, we'll call her "Bud" (heck, I always do), just before I got married. My then-fiance introduced us. She was a desktop publisher at his company, and he was hoping that if she and I hit it off, she would be able to talk me out of my wild and crazy theatre career and into something more stable, with regular hours... like desktop publishing.

I met up with Bud at a coffee shop one afternoon-- I had never laid eyes on her before, but I knew it had to be her, because she was wearing the most incredibly artistic outfit I had ever seen. When I asked her where she had gotten the cool duds, she answered, "I made them myself". The friendship was solidified right then and there. And no, I never did "get into" the computer stuff-- instead, we talked incessantly about our obsession with clothing design and theatre... It was one of those weird connections, where you look into the eyes of another person that you have never met before, but you feel as though you've known them your entire life.

Bud and I have shared everything in our lives for nearly two decades now. We have done all the "little stuff" like sewing and shopping together, we have shared the intense highs-- we were at the births of each others' children-- and seen one another through the lows-- I could not have managed to make it through my grandmother's death and funeral without her... Even though we now live about a quarter of the world away from one another, we are still just as close as ever. We try to pick up the phone on a regular basis, even if it's just to leave a message on the other person's answering machine. But, if a little time passes between calls, we can still pick right up where we left off and carry on as though the lull never happened. We're connected by WAY more than just a telephone wire.

So WHY is it that I can NEVER remember her birthday??!!

I confess, I'm just not a birthday person. Never have been. When I was old enough to speak, I swear one of my first requests was to ask my mother NOT to throw me a party. I hate being the centre of attention... and age doesn't mean much to me.

I don't think I have EVER been able to remember Bud's birthday, in the nearly twenty years that we've been friends. When I turned thirty, my husband offered to throw me a party, and I asked him to fly her in for a nice, long visit instead. When the travel agent we were dealing with asked how old Bud was, and for her date of birth... I was mortified to realize that I couldn't come up with either answer. I had to secretly telephone her son for the information...

Me: (in a fierce whisper, as if ANYONE else could hear me) Hey!! It's Auntie Heather!! Listen, honey, what's your mum's birthday, and how the hell old is she?? NO, I have no idea!! You've got to find out, and DON'T YOU DARE TELL HER I CALLED, or she'll never forgive me!!

But do you know what? She always does forgive me... I'm not sure why. But I'm immensely grateful that she does, year after year... Because it would be no fun going through this crazy life without Bud. She makes everything better for me, and helps me see the funny side of things. We laugh together. A lot. She is as dear to me as my own flesh and blood.

So, Happy Belated Birthday, my friend, I love you. If you can put up with me a few years more, I'll still be by your side when we're in our rocking chairs on the porch at The Home... And I'll sure as hell never remember your birthday THEN.

Hey, if nothing else, at least I'm consistent, right??!

1 comment:

Multi-tasking Mommy said...

Having friends like that is truly the best!

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