A Weekend With Pita

Pita was over for the week­end. He had a com­pe­ti­tion in the city, in both Standard and Latin, and need­ed a place to crash. He tells me that he’s at the point where he’s stuck between achiev­ing a high­er lev­el and pri­or­i­tiz­ing the sport as a recre­ation, espe­cial­ly after com­ing back emp­ty-hand­ed this week­end when he won two golds at the last com­pe­ti­tion. 25 is get­ting old for a com­pet­i­tive dancer, and his instruc­tor, who’s the same age as him, is already the Canadian cham­pi­on.

I have an inter­est­ing rela­tion­ship with Pita. He was the first per­son I met when I moved to this city, shar­ing a room on the 15th floor of a res­i­den­cy. Similar inter­ests and intel­lects meant that we got along much bet­ter than the oth­er pairs of frosh room­mates, most of whom got stuck with the crazy, the irra­tional, and the dis­gust­ing. We went sep­a­rate ways the next year, but moved into an apart­ment togeth­er for the fol­low­ing two years. After part­ing ways as room­mates, when he moved 12000 kilo­me­tres to the place he was born, before com­ing back to this coun­try, we did­n’t speak to each oth­er for more than eigh­teen months.

Now, when­ev­er I see him, when­ev­er he’s in town vis­it­ing old friends or par­tic­i­pat­ing in com­pe­ti­tions, we can greet each oth­er with­out for­mal­i­ties and just pick up where we left off. It’s on odd state between acquain­tance and friend­ship. We share our­selves, and what we’ve learned and how we’ve changed since last see­ing each oth­er, but nev­er keep in touch oth­er­wise. We also give each oth­er per­spec­tive. He often speaks as if he’s ask­ing for advice or guid­ance, with­out actu­al­ly ask­ing. I offer my point of view, which he always inter­prets in a dif­fer­ent way than intend­ed, and this keeps me on my toes.

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