Saturday, July 14, 2012


This seems to be a summer for getting in touch with people from my past. This week, I wrote an email to one of my best friends from high school. I caught up with her via her brother, who I found on the internet (and frankly, I'm surprised that he relayed my message - we never liked each other very

I was well into my third year of high school when I moved from Hawaii to Colorado. I felt like a fish out off water in this new/old school (I had spent a semester there in Grade 9, before moving to Hawaii). A few people recognised me and didn't realise I'd ever left, but I sure knew - everything about that school felt foreign to me. I hated it.

Music saved me. I discovered that I had a special knack: I could pick up practically any musical instrument and learn to play it, quickly. So I joined the band (they needed a tuba player so I spent a weekend teaching myself to play the sousaphone) and that's how I met D.

We were as different as two people could be. I was a worldly, jetsetting 17-year-old from a reasonably affluent family who had travelled and moved around the country/countries, via motorhome, motorcycle, sailboat.

D, 14 years old, was born and raised in a tiny mountain town and she'd never travelled outside of Colorado. I was a cynical and suspicious kid. D was warm and open and trusting. Looking back, I like her far better than I like my teenaged self.

She was a wonderful friend to me - we spent hours doing typical teenage stuff: writing notes, talking on the phone, eating lunch together, giggling on the lawn outside our school. I'll never forget our friendship and what it meant to me. She was my confidant and my biggest booster.

After graduation, I went on to university, then I moved on to the east coast for graduate school. D and I lost touch. The next time we connected, she was divorced with a young son, having just escaped an abusive relationship. We exchanged a few emails, then she stopped responding.

I was really excited to get in touch again. She now lives in a tiny town in the western US and she's remarried. I replied to her email immediately and for days, I biked around my city, hyper-aware of the bustle, the traffic, the people, the giant buildings, the mundane details of my life. I wondered what her life was like - her town, her friends.

I was hopeful that we might build a new connection, a new friendship on the foundations of our old one. But sadly, I haven't heard from her at all. And I'm wondering if there isn't enough common ground between us to bridge the years.

Maybe it's better to leave the past in the past

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPad

1 comment:

Unknown said...

i'm a mover, a wandering gypsy. i wonder how much you need to have before you can count on that friendship forever? and sometimes it is quick and strong, sometimes slow, hard.
and i read this listening to fleet foxes montezuma "oh man what i used to be"...