Dear Monique,

Let’s begin again.

I suppose it’s only fitting that I went back to Lake Pukaki just a couple months ago. It was the first time in around 28 years.

28 years.

I will apologize if I am rusty after all this time.

And even that is a peculiar notion. That the brain can oxidize and its moving parts will grind and seize. That forcing it will just bring friction, heat, eventually a splintered explosion of axles and gears.

Perhaps we will find that is true.

Certainly a few things have changed since I last wrote. We’re living just outside of Auckland now, and following the religion of all Aucklanders: trying to buy a house. As this year goes on, I promise not to talk about real estate prices too much. We are Aucklanders only in name.

I still think about and talk about and write about rock music whenever I can. I’ll still dance around the house in my underwear while listening to Kiss played at a neighbour-bothering volume. I still have lots of groupie-wear and a wide array of killer shoes.

Our two cats became three. And then (over the span of 6 months), they became two, then four, then three, then two, then one, and then three again. A totally different three. 2014 was a very tough year. But our current three are great playmates – happy, healthy, and slightly crazy, which fits in well.

I am still working in Event Management, although I’m back working for a venue again and no longer struggling along for myself. The days are still long, but there are a lot more of them now. Four events this week. Five next week. Averaging 12 hours a piece, plus a bunch of bump-in and admin. Most nights I fall asleep on the couch without meaning to. It will make the writing time much harder to find. I promise not to talk about work too much.

However, as always, my intention is also to keep this journal as open and honest as possible. That means that, at times, I will no doubt be crude, shameless, and generally inappropriate. I am trying very hard not to be embarrassed by this, and I hope that you will try to do the same. This is probably not going to be a blog that you will want to share with your mother.

I can’t promise that anything interesting will happen in the coming year, but I can promise that I will post an entry every day, regardless. And you never know what the future will bring…

That guy I was dating just for the heck of it – the one I knew wouldn’t last: I married him. And that’s not the only way in which I’ve settled down.

Once, you were my only friend, Monique. That girl who talked to me, and laughed with me, but only when no one else would see. That makes me sound crazy, but really you were one of the popular kids and I was THAT kid, and for that brief time it wasn’t some horrible joke at my expense. We were just nine, and you were lonely too. You showed me that I had the chance to be something else. In a different world. In a different body. There would be second chances.

I’m still grateful for that. After 28 years, it’s still coming true.

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