Lezlie and I met on the first day of high school. I can’t remember what drew us to each other but it likely had to do with pointy shoes or The Cure. For the next three years we started to develop our adult taste together discovering David Lynch, Woody Allen, Kids In The Hall, Robertson Davies, REM, Husker Du also self ripped jeans, rat tails and henna tattoos.
After high school we stayed in each other lives though or paths diverted. We grew independently with biweekly or so check ins until I moved to Toronto. A year later we would spend 9/11 together during my visit back to Halifax to be a bridesmaid at her wedding. The next ten years of visits home unveiled the birth and growth or her two daughters, construction on her only-on-the-east coast huge amazing homes and the evolution of her interest in writing into an amazing teaching job.
Now I see her three to four times a year when she comes to Toronto for conferences. We discuss things like grey hair and ‘kids these days’. This time we talked a lot about family and responsibility and mortality. Also sadness. Her cat died last year. My cat had died the day before. We both got them from the same shelter in Dartmouth thirteen years ago and knew each others’ well. The guilt in having to put an animal down can only be soothed by someone who has had to do the same thing. The sadness however just has to play itself out. I think it’s going to be with me a very long time.
We said our goodbyes and until next times. And more than with anyone else I know, I know there will be next times forever. She is the friend I’ve known the longest and the only person I even still know from high school. We were two peas in a pod back then with our pointy shoes and weird music. Long Live Us.