Sunday, May 22, 2011

Solsbury Hill

Every relationship has that point where you know for certain that Love is the bond and even if the love were to change the moment couldn't and the bond would be forged in steel. Years ago I was at the lake house hiding from whatever I didn't want to change and feeling sad. Sometimes you see feeling sad is easier than fixing anything and where do you start to bail the ocean? I can't even remember how long I was there with Richie, spending summer days playing in the sand or taking the paddle boat out to fish for fish that were never there, mostly just to sit in the sun and read while he was close and for a change, quiet. I took a few calls, but mostly just wanted to be out there in the middle of nowhere on the lake and alone. Best Friend would call, week after week asking when I was returning home. I didn't have an answer for her, for Richie's father, for my family, for anyone.

One day she just shows up. Who? The Best Friend anyone has ever had. In the big black Chrysler she shows up on the gravel road. I was reading and listening to Richie play on the beach. I remember being surprised as usually she'd fire a warning shot that she was on her way, but not today. She was listening to Peter Gabriel in the car loud of course and she just looked at me and said, pack your things, I've come to take you home. She had that determined look I'd seen a few times before and more than a few times after. She's a force of nature and when she makes up her mind, that's just how it's going to be and either you are on board or you are an obstacle s he will push aside, your choice, of course. (always your choice) And I remembered being a little terrified to have to push aside sadness and make solid decisions and then a calm, she was on my side and everything would be just fine, of course it would be just fine.

We sat and talked for awhile, she'd listen to the reasons I didn't want to go back to the city, to return to the life that was just a dream falling into a thousand pieces. She'd listen as she packed my things. She'd help me tidy things as you can't just leave things in a house that you only visit when you are needing time away. You want to return to a new slate each time. We kept our most precious things there, the little things we had gathered when we traveled, the starfish from the Bahamas, the big wooden fish that sat at the end of the pier that now sits at her house, because that's where it belongs. When we would swim with Richie and his friends down the lake, we knew we were close to home when we could touch the fish. I remember wondering how some place so beautiful could feel like a prison at times. In the later part of my marriage, Best Friend and I were taking off from the Lake house for a day of goofing around, riding around to find antique shops, maybe an old book store, and I heard my husband tell her "Well just have her home by five or so." I remember thinking, we will be far away from here at five if for no other reason than that sill mandate. Thank God for fast cars and Best Friends. She shares her family with me, she shares her secret dreams with me, I know her real age and would never tell a soul, I know when we are in a crowded room and something insane is going on that nobody seems to notice that if we connect eye contact we won't be able to stop giggling and will probably have to leave the room.

So yesterday when heading home from the nursery, a trunk full of flowers and plants and a new trellis, there on the radio appears Solsbury Hill and I had to call her you see, "my heart going boom boom boom he said, son, pack your things I've come to take you home." changed my life. It was the first day of the rest of it, the getting on with it, the happy part of my life. Who else would I share that moment with but her? Who else would I share ten thousand of them after? She is the best part of this world, the adventure part, the fun part, the joy. She makes an ordinary afternoon one of exploration. We've driven around lost a thousand times only to find some landmark that makes us both sigh. We've had loud conversations in bookstores that gives other pause. And I never doubt for a moment she loves me. After all on that summer afternoon there were others who could have come to take me home, but that doesn't matter, she is the one who did.

I had to share the video from only the best concert ever in the history of all concerts and maybe a few more of Gabriel's songs. He is after all an angel by definition.

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