I miss my friends. This isn’t a purely Iqaluit thing. If I still lived in St. John’s I’d miss my friends. While I have more back in town than I do here, the sad fact is that I suffer from the same problem that many Newfoundlanders do – friends and family scattered to the four winds
Although I should mention this one staggering fact. That of my both my mom and dad’s side of the family, taking in parents, grandparents, aunts, uncles and cousins (and I have about 20 cousins) there are only two of us not living in Newfoundland. That would be myself and my cousin Randy who lives in Calgary. I don't know if that makes us unique in Newfoundland, but I guarentee there are not many families with that few in exile.
But anyway…I miss my friends. I still exchange e-mail with them and all, but we rarely chat on the phone. I’m horrible for calling people and I suspect most of them have their own busy lives so regularly calling isn’t always an options.
But I can still hear their voices, especially when I read something brilliant like this.
Understand, I love OM to pieces. She's one of my best friends. It’s been a year since I’ve seen her and God only knows when I’ll see her again. But I read that conversation and cracked up because it’s her. The logic train skipping the tracks, the resolve to quit smoking, all of it. She might as well have been in the same room with me for that moment. I could hear her voice.
My favourite OM phone moment came in 1995. I was in Halifax studying for my journalism degree. She was still at MUN, slowly losing her mind trying to run the muse. It was early in the new year and I had just returned after Christmas break. I was also feeling a bit lonely at that point. The phone rang and OM was on the line.
I don’t remember what was said in the conversation. I’m not entirely certain I understood what was being said to me, to be honest. The important points were the following:
1. In 1995 you could not get Jolt Cola in Newfoundland. As a Christmas gift I brought her home a dozen cans from Halifax. Why? Because it seemed like a good idea at the time.
2. OM at the time weighed next to nothing (probably still does). She was less than 100 pounds and always a touch on the…hyper side.
3. Prior to calling me, she drank four cans of Jolt Cola in the space of about 30 minutes.
4. In my defence, I kind of thought she might drink one or two in quick succession and then bug the shit out of her boyfriend. I never dreamed she would drink four that quickly.
I was not her first call. That was to her boyfriend at the time. However, recognizing that I was the cause of this hyper-caffeinated whirling dervish, suggested that she call me. Which she did.
The result was a 45 minute conversation in which, I swear to God, she did not stop to take a breath. I don’t know how you can talk that much, that fast on one breath for 45 minutes. Perhaps a hose pumping oxygen straight into her lungs. There’s probably a biology paper to be written on it.
But she did and she cracked me up. I still laugh at it. But most importantly, I felt the world better even though my friends weren’t nearby (I had issues with one or two people at j-school. We’ll leave it at that). She’s good like that. Most of them are.
Anyway, I miss my friends. But it’s nice to know that they can still make me laugh from a long ways away…