“It’s not over yet?!” Heather’s voice had been reduced to an annoyed, sleepy mumble.
I chuckled and glanced at the clock on the oven. 1:47AM. Somehow it always ends up the same way: Heather nodding off and me trying to keep her awake. The difference being, this time, instead of watching a Ghost Adventures episode, it was The Godfather.
“So…why are they killing the guy in the car?” I held my phone in the way of the TV screen for a moment until the sound of machine guns stopped. Fake blood or not, I shuddered at the sight of it.
“He’s the son of the godfather, right?”
“I don’t know. He just drove up and they shot him, and I don’t recognize him in the least.”
“Wait, is he a bad guy?”
“Aren’t the machine gun guys the bad guys?”
“This is the world’s worst movie.”
“I know!” I looked over in surprise at Heather, I was a tad afraid to voice the opinion myself. Heather had been keeping up so well with the storyline that I thought she was more interested in the film and perhaps understood the hype.
“It never ends.”
“And there’s too many characters.”
“And it’s confusing.”
“I know!” We both started laughing.
“It’s so stupid!” Heather’s tired, half-laughing mumble was the most comical thing I had ever heard in my life. I remember thinking that I would never forget what Heather sounds like when she’s laughing, it’s musical and infectious.
We complained and laughed sleepily at each other’s complaints every few minutes until finally the credits started rolling, both of us half-asleep by the time it was finally over.
“Wait…that’s how it ends?”
“So it would seem.” I chuckled when something came to mind. “Heather, you realize this was the easiest thing on the list?”
She chuckled, “Ha! I can’t do any others! This was too much!”
I suppose that could count as our movie review. We did get attached to a few characters who ended up dying (and a lot of characters ended up dying,) and we were able to piece together parts of the storyline, but it wasn’t a pleasant experience.
The upside, of course, is that now me and Heather Madame have one more item marked off of our 20 Before 20 list.
It was raining heavily all day. The drive to church in Heather’s cantankerous Jeep (that we have named Cher, because it is the color of a cherry,) was the most intense we have ever experienced. I tell you now that those windshield wipers were plotting our demise and attempting to execute a hit using the newly formed puddles in north Texas’ many potholes to cause us to repeatedly lose our sense of direction, and the unusually blinding and glaring street lights to disorient us. Even with the rain the drive consisted of a mix of contemplative discussion and absurd, hilarious stories, it’s just that this time, in between each story there was a moment of my life flashing before my eyes.
If there is one thing I’ve learned about Heather, it’s that she is hypersensitive to the stares of other people. We walked around the lobby and wandered into a couple of hallways (well, I wandered into a couple of hallways, Heather just made sure I didn’t get too curious about the ‘Church Staff Only’ rooms and try to sneak in), I knew she wanted to duck into the sanctuary and stay out of sight, but the hallway looked interesting, so I slowly inched farther down as we chatted. Next thing I knew she was making a beeline for the sanctuary doors and there was little I could do except follow along. Sneaking down hallways is not nearly as fun when one is sneaking alone.
“I felt like there were a lot of eyes on us out there.” She whispered as we sat down near the back.
“Where, in the hallway?”
“Well, I suppose it does seem like a modest group, new people must be a bit of a big deal.” I raised my stare to view the room and, sure enough, several people were staring directly at us.
Halfway through the sermon it struck me that I wasn’t even dissociating (usually the first step in a panic attack for me, dissociating is when you feel distant or separated from the environment and yourself.) I wondered if it was perhaps because of Heather’s presence, or the fact that, for the first time in years, I was actually bored with a sermon. Perhaps my lack of any sort of anxiety was due to the fact that it didn’t feel like I was in church. Like it was just another building with no significance, with a kind-looking fellow at a podium who didn’t seem to be talking about much of anything.
When we stepped outside it was pouring much harder than when we had first arrived. The sky was black as ink, the sound of the downpour drowned out any voices and the pleasant clicking of our heels, and the raindrops were so tiny and fine yet so overpowering that the air surrounding the street lamps seemed to consist of a dancing fog that consumed the very air we breathed. Both Heather Madame and I were expecting to end up in some sort of car accident, perhaps a little bump into a pole or a collision with one of those tiny ‘Geek Squad’ cars. We couldn’t tell the sidewalk from the street, and those merciless, twitching windshield wipers did nothing to calm the tension. Nothing happened, thank goodness, and we still somehow managed to talk the entire time.
I took a lot of mental photographs last night. Because I loved that moment of running through the rain in our high-heels (it was my idea…I thought they would look classy with my new slacks, and Heather doesn’t wears her very often) with nothing to shield us from the storm but Heather’s comically puny parasol that her mother bought her on a trip to Disneyland when she was ten. And the moment when we walked over to the stove while making the quiche and realized that we had just accidentally deep-fried the spinach and bacon bits into a state of semi-charcol. And reminiscing about the days when Ryleigh was part of our lives, the little adventures we’d get into, and wondering aloud for the thousandth time why she left.
I used to believe that the best memories happen when you don’t think you’re making memories, and I suppose I still believe that, but there are moments that are exceptions, like when you’re staring into a pan of deep-fried blackened bacon bits with your best friend and with the utmost horror wonder aloud “How did it come to this?”
I had hoped that I could keep it brief, but, once again, a post has extended far past my 300-word goal.
Until I Write Again,