Age 21. Resides in Winnipeg, MB.
I hope you don’t mind the interruption in usual programming. Last week my class was given a photojournalism assignment for Festival du Voyageur.
This week I’m incapacitated with a flu. So I haven’t left the house (or my bed) in nearly two days now. I figured interviewing someone in this state would not only require some legwork I’d struggle with, but would also put someone’s health at risk.
Plus, I look sort of terrifyingly disheveled. Instead, here’s a story from myself.
When I was in grade 11, my best friend Kira was dating this guy named Alex. He was a couple years older than us, and definitely seemed cooler. He trades vintage clothes for a living. During their relationship, Kira invited me to come hang out with them a couple times. We went to his place and did a variety of things high school kids enjoyed, like play Soul Caliber and smoke pot.
Alex lived with three other guys in the top two floors of a duplex. I met two of them: Paul and Boreal. We had some interesting times in that house. I also met guys named Levi, Annachie and Noah there.
At the time, Kira was the only person I really knew. Only person I really felt comfortable with. I enjoyed Alex too, but I guess my stoned high school self was kind of shy?
They broke up after about a year.
I took Kira to our high school grad. Her and I had spent every lunch hour together through my 5 years at Grant Park. We went to my cabin, to concerts, to meet boys and to the bar together. Until the fall of 2013.
I moved to Ottawa to attend Carleton University. She moved to Israel to attend a dance school. She lived with her aunt and uncle out there. Last time she spent a couple months in Israel, she brought back home made peach jam for me. They owned a peach farm.
This time, we expected to be separated for good. Over the summer, she had bailed on our plans a fair bit. I figured she didn’t like my new boyfriend.
About a week into living in Ottawa, I tried to reach out to her on Skype. See how she was, how the flights were, if she was excited to be in Israel for the year. When she finally messaged me back, I cried. She dumped me. She listed off reasons for why we couldn’t be friends anymore. There was no hint of forgiveness in her words. She called me out on any — or all — of my flaws.
About a year later, we were both back in Winnipeg. I haven’t hung out with her since, other than running into her at an occasional party.
But I see Paul almost every week. I see Boreal and Levi on a monthly basis. They play in one of my favourite local bands. I see Alex regularly too, and every time, he expresses some gratitude that we’ve stayed friends.
It was strange — I had met Paul and Levi, hung out with them those couple times, then never thought of them much. Hardly saw them. I stayed friends with Boreal because of mutual interests and a natural connection (we can talk. For hours.) but Paul and Levi and Alex sort of fell off my social map.
Now I see Paul every week and he’s hilarious!
The social circles in this city seem to range from totally connected and shared, to strung together by a thin strand of individuals. I still see Kira sometimes. I see Annichie occasionally, and Noah goes to my school. Maybe it’s just the size of this city that makes everyone feel so close.
I usually see Levi and Boreal at gigs like Big Fun or Real Love Thursdays at the Handsome Daughter.
Keep an eye out for sweet local bands, like their band Umami.