Scintilla Day 8: Who was your childhood best friend? Describe them--what brought you together, what made you love them. Are you still friends today?

She lived up the street from me. Honestly, I don't exactly remember why we became friends. We were nothing alike. She was gorgeous, developed early, had a lot of male attention at too early an age. Her parents (I only get this now) had married too young, were dissatisfied and inconsistent, ignored her for stretches and then demanded impossible things. She was athletic, a dancer. She wasn't the teacher-pleaser I was and had difficulties in school.

But we were inseparable. We rode our bikes around the dusty streets of our little town. We ran around the hills and bushes behind the elementary school. We babysat her younger sisters and played music and danced and she taught me how to move slightly less like a deranged bobble-head. I helped her with her homework. We snuck out her basement bedroom window at night, wandering the dark streets of our neighbourhood looking for safe danger, then wiggled back in the window, her skirt hiked up around her waist, her green underwear showing, and laughed until we gasped for air.

We navigated the rocky coast of first love and first heartbreak together, wrote terrible poetry and cried into her mother's ice cream. We discussed baffling sexual terms and talked to boys on the phone, switching back and forth without the boy ever guessing. We did unforgivable things to each other, often because of boys, and forgave each other anyway. I often felt that, although she lacked the vocabulary, she had an uncanny ability to see right to the heart of a matter. She may have been the first person to know me well and like me anyway.

In high school we dated best friends. My boyfriend found her baffling. Once when we were talking about her and I was explaining (not defending, because I never felt she needed that) he said "so... she's not wise, but she's clever?"

"No," I said "she's not clever, but she's wise."


Amanda said…
She sounds like a wonderful friend. : )
Patti said…
Lovely. I remember her, but didn't know her well. Know what she's up to these days?
Lady Mama said…
I like your writing. :) Your friend sounds like an interesting character.
StephLove said…
Did you stay in touch?

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