I’m driving out to see Darren for the weekend. He’s five hours away, and it’ll be my first trip out of the city in the car. My car.
There’s a certain satisfaction to filling my trunk with odds and ends — tripod, sandals, snacks — that I couldn’t have carried on a Greyhound bus. Got my GPS and a full tank of gas.
I had Summer Sun by Ellen ten Damme playing here.
I can’t wait to drive with the windows down while the sun is setting along the horizon, Summer Sun playing on the stereo. To be going somewhere by myself.
Killed my top rated playlist at work. Even have all the songs burned to several CDs for the trip. My head is filled with lyrics. I may also begin my audiobook of Carson McCullers’s The Heart Is a Lonely Hunter.
I’m going through some hyperactive euphoria again, this contradictory feeling of the scary and exciting unknown. The best part about hanging out with Darren is that each of us understands exactly how the other feels, even though we may not understand it in ourselves. Something which is especially important right now, even though I’m pretty sure I’ll be okay.
I had Darren over from Toronto for the weekend. We were going to do a movie marathon at the theatre — three in a day — but the movies all sucked. Disturbia? Georgia Rule? Please. Instead, I bought the first season of Six Feet Under, and we finished the roughly 11 hour season over two days. Now I can re-watch it with Bronwen and lend it to Pat. To be honest, I’d seen up to the second season before, but I was too stoned to remember most of it.
Darren also gave me a nice tea container. It’s rather large, since I buy my tea 50mg at a time, but better too big than too small. He also got me some chai tea, considered a wellness blend. When I asked him what for, he couldn’t give me a reason. I love gifts for no reason.
We shared our tattoo ideas, and his was the Chinese character for love on his back. Darren and Bronwen are the some of the few people I can talk openly with about love. We’re such hopeless romantics. We tell each other that we’ll never be married, not to be self-depracating, but to be honest with ourselves. We have our ideals, and we’ll never settle for anything less. It’s comforting to know that we’re not alone in our quixotic beliefs.
Darren and I had originally planned on driving up together, but the timing didn’t work out, so we arrived when we could and played it by ear. Bronny was the point of my visit, while Darren was there to see Lindsay. After a driving from pub to pub, each one full of St. Patty’s day partiers adorned with green horns and holding green pints, the four of us ended up at a small restaurant, and eventually at Lindsay’s house.
It was Bronny who made the most interesting comment to me afterwards. “Darren needs to be with someone…deep”, she said, “Someone intellectual”. I still wonder what made her think so. What did we talk about? As far as I could remember, there was no particularly interesting discussion, just a bunch of us hanging out.
Exactly one year ago today, I was doing this. Even though the annual party at Chris and Clarmen’s actually starts on the 25th, I really see it as a boxing day party, the way a New Year’s party really starts on the 31st of December.
That night we used the excuse of going to Timmies for all the parents as a way out of the house to have a session. Unfortunately, this meant remembering about a dozen drink orders, something that proves difficult under the influence.
In chronological order:
We met up at the house, where Darren’s fingers brave the turtles
A session occurred outside, and on the way to Timmies we introduced Chris to Dreamtheater (hence the music selection)
An order is made for about a dozen drinks with great difficulty
We drove back to play Slap Hand, which is a variation on Slap Jack, except the pile is hit every time the correct number is called (and for increased difficulty we played with +/- rules where the pile is only hit if the number spoken is an addition or subtraction of a different specified number)
Darren randomly deals everyone a hand of hold ’em and plays it through, and this causes me to make fun of his obvious addiction
Darren precisely deals a full hand of 13 cards for a game of Asshole, while talking, for which I count my cards in disbelief and finally realize just how much he plays cards
Other signs of how stoned we were:
Darren and Chris’s voices drop an octave, while my voice raises two (two!)
I can’t keep my jittery hands under control
The way Chris says, “Just awesome guys. Awesome.”
At one point we have to stop to count to the right number in Slap Hand
I laugh, a lot
This year, today, Lam joined us instead since Darren is off in Las Vegas.
Went home for the weekend, spent it with Darren. It was a gloomy few days; cloudy, humid, and generally uncomfortable.
At one point, Darren asked me if it felt like home, or whether my apartment here has taken the role. I couldn’t really answer him at the time. I just knew that they feel different. We lit up in a park that I used to play in while I was still in elementary school, and it felt odd to be stoned in a beautifully empty playground in the middle of Saturday, surrounded by all these upper-middle class houses with their pools and patios. Places that aren’t comfortable, but familiar.