Tuesday, January 28, 2014

Hands across the ocean

We're off, taking our tiny tyrant on a long flight to the land of perfect teeth and endless summer. Last night we crashed at our dear friends, the fabulous e-tailing entrepreneur (is that a word? Let's make it so) and her family.

The Fabulous One and I have been close co-conspirators since we met in our first grown up jobs. We've bridesmaided for each other, and once visited a ropey strip joint together. So you know we're fast friends. And for most of the time we've lived at opposite ends of a large city, a country and a continent and whatever you call the girth of the USA and the Atlantic added together.

The Fabulous One lived in Dubai for a spell, and a few years later in Tallinn, while I was firmly embedded in the NW5 comfort bubble. We quickly devised a method of emailing chat where we'd answer each other's questions in CAPS LOCK: to the outside observer it looks like shouting but we knew it was just the fastest way to answer important queries about fripperies, tittle tattle, TV shows and so on. We used to post each other magazines, complete with post-its and scribbles ('LOVE these boots!', 'Thinking of getting my hair cut like this, whaddaya think?') to recreate the feeling of flipping through a glossy while in the same actual room. And we were early Skype adopters. I made a few trips out to see her overseas, too, back in the days when I was footloose and financial-responsibility-free.

When I first moved to the US with TLOML, she was one of those friends I took for granted it was 'au revoir', not goodbye. We bridged the gap with emails and Skype, again. Despite the much longer flight, and the fact she had two lovely daughters to leave behind, her and her husband visited us in Malibu for a priceless few days of constant chitchat.

So it felt fitting to spend our last night in London with people whose friendship has already survived plenty of time spent apart. I calculate that we've lived in different countries for over a third of our 18 years of friendship. And I'm sure that in another 18 years we'll have just as much to say to each other, as we reconvene over a G&T and a Harper's Bazaar somewhere in the world. The same is, I know, true of friends like my WonderTwin, and my favourite little sister.With Skype on our phones, and most importantly, the willingness to swap idle chit chat whenever the opportunity arises, I know we'll still be besties even though we're far apart.

Thus fortified with friendship, I head off on my voyage. Au revoir!

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