I met K in the 70’s. We used to work together for what now seems like a fraction of a second. Then I moved away and for a brief time we stayed in touch. Then I moved even further away, and further still, and eventually she moved too and married and remarried. Along the way there have been an assortment of cats and dogs, long ago mutual friends and at least one hamster, as well as a gap of years and years and years when all we did was send birthday and xmas cards. We rarely spoke and we never saw each other. Yet we remained connected in that peculiar way of old friends… where when the phone rings one day and you hear their voice for the first time in a decade and you start talking like no time at all has passed.
Recently, we’ve been meeting for lunch once or twice a year at a place about an hour’s drive for each of us. We rarely do phone calls and emails are few, yet when we see each other it’s like someone spliced out all the gaps and this lovely film just continues on from the last scene…
K always begins every lunch by explaining to the server that we’ll be there a while.
You haven’t lived until you’ve seen her place an order. “And exactly what size are the peppers when they come out?”
She still has the most contagious laugh I know.
How long could you go without talking? However long I’m asleep.
Do you prefer silence or noise? Noise, as in background… a fan at night, TV on while reading…
How many pairs of shoes do you own? Fewer than 10.
If you won $25 million? I’d fix the garage and the driveway, give some to family and Humane Society.
One law you’d make? Install a device in cars that prevents driving drunk.
Unusual talent? Am a ‘Name that Tune’ master.
What do you like to cook? One pot meals.
Have you or would you ever bungee jump? No.
What’s the most daredevilish thing you’ve done? Roller coaster at CNE. Hated it.
Do you like surprise parties, practical jokes? Yes.
Favourite time of day? Early morning.
What tree would you be? Birch.
Best present ever received? An opal ring I’d had my eye on. My dad gave it to me to me the year my mum died just before xmas.
What do you like on your toast? Peanut butter.
The last thing you drew a picture of? A map with directions.
Last thing written in ink. Birthday card.
Favourite childhood meal? My dad’s meatloaf.
Best invention? Car.
Describe your childhood bedroom. Pink with rosy wallpaper. Maybe. We rented and moved around a lot.
Afraid of spiders? Not spiders, snakes.
Phobias? Heights. [see bungee jumping and devilish thing; also declined hot air balloon idea]
Least favourite teacher? Mr. Something—made me put gum on my nose for chewing in class.
Favourite children’s story? Anything Winnie the Pooh.
Ideal picnic ingredients? Potato salad, devilled eggs, fresh buns and butter, pickles, cold cuts, strawberries, ice tea, no bugs.
Is Barbie a negative role model? No.
Best thing about Canada? Landscape.
Best thing about people in general? Their differences.
What flavour would you be? Chocolate.
What colour? Pink.
What would you come back as? Medium sized border collie.
Favourite saying: “She offered her honour; he honoured her offer; and all night long he was honour and offer.”
—the frivolous five, a series of frivolity