These are my college girlfriends; friends I made at the best possible time in my life to make friends. At 19 you're free, liberated, self-entitled, hopeful, and you have enough energy to... do what we did in college. Let's just leave it at that.
It began in an unexpected fashion- this group of friends. There was this girl at our small school who was notorious for pretty much everything she did. From the clothes that she wore (think J-Lo during her stint on In Living Color), from her hair style (she used gel and had a widows peak, ya dig?) and the large overtones reeking of Jersey (let's just mix Victoria's Secret body lotion, the aforementioned hair gel and the scratch and sniff Sagittarius mini t-shirts from Gadzooks) you couldn't miss her if you threw the LA Looks bottle in her opposing direction.
She scared the shit out of me. She walked into this party once when we were freshman wearing gold hoop earrings the size of my head, platform sneakers, a denim jumper and commanded the attention of everyone in the room. She was everything that I was not (I was hiding behind the two people I knew in the whole school) and never did I expect that she'd become my best friend.
Irony. I expect it at this point, but back then I was shocked at the turn of events.
Semi-randomly I was invited to move into an off campus apartment for my junior year of college and Noelle just happened to be mutual friends with one of my new roommates. You can't change fate, and thus through a year of running into her at my place and at social events, we were fast friends; unlikely friends that changed each other for the better. She brought me up to speed in the social scene, showed me what outgoing really meant and made me laugh my ass off. I chilled her out a bit, created space for her to be introspective before reacting and made her laugh her ass off.
And, I got to make friends with all her friends.
We eventually all moved in together in Salem (to the infamous Salem House) and solidified our friendships for the long run. Elysia is Captain One-Liner ("my ovaries just skipped a beat"), Jude is the Pageant Princess (bend and snap, no?), Elizabeth is the Princess of Darkness ("he had no tongue!"), Ashley (sorry, but your name is Sashley for very obvious reasons and you're going to have to live with it), and last but not least there's Abi (sort of my spirit-twin; we can smell bullshit before the bull starts looking around for a bathroom read). For some reason- we all managed to stay friends for this long. We've had our battles- Judie has had pasta thrown at her as well as a vase (on separate occasions and I claim no liability for damaged items), two certain ladies almost threw down in the hallway by the bathroom (while I sat in my room listening not sure if laughing was appropriate rather than coordinating a peace treaty), but we've had so many more happy happenings that involve blackmail-esque pictures, mystery bruises, dance parties, and... vacations.
Which brings us to Miami, last month. My goodness- it's been almost two by now. We try to do a trip if not once a year, once every other year to reconnect, channel our college selves (with the repercussions of older bodies that just do NOT bounce back like they used to), and to decompress.
And baby, we still got it.
Did we pay for like, any drinks? No.
Did we wait in lines to get into any club? Um, no.
Are we still very cute? Very cute.
And, do we still manage to have fun, be the teeniest bit reckless, over do it slightly (bruise our heads on a trash can that we're not actually "using"), and have priceless quotes to remind us of our night from one another's brief but oddly inspired moments of clarity (thumbies)? You bet your sweet ass we do.
At that, I sit here thinking about where I want to go with this and I realize that I'm here. No matter what happens, where we are, who we marry; if we remember what we have in each other, we never have to ever worry about being lonely or misunderstood. I'd say that more than ever, that is what I believe good fortune to be.
All because of Dirty Jerz. Pour a lil' out.
In 2004 for my 21st Birthday. Where's Waldo?
In Miami, August, 2011.