Time Traveling

During every round of household excavations, i find something that stops me in my tracks.  This time?  No exception.

Viciously tearing through bookshelves heaving with excess, i was in good form.  Thirty year old textbook on “Plastics Engineering”?  POOF!  That “Principles of Modern Physics” that tortured me for an entire year of undergraduate studies?  Get outta my life, Drs. Halliday and Resnick!  Paperback novels bought in airports over the past few decades of travel?  Banished to the thrift store box!  Find a new home!

On the same shelf?  A small book of poetry.  A gift, long forgotten.  Opening the cover i discovered the handwritten inscription from 1978.

To Daisyfae -
Finding an old book is like reliving the past.  As the dust is swept away by the hand, the mind recalls memories of different times and old friends.
Merry Christmas!
With love,
Jenny

As if my excavations weren’t slowed enough?  A book of photographs – with the following written inside the cover:

Daisyfae,

Well, the day we’ve looked forward to for so long is finally here… May 18th, 1980, better known as the day we graduate.  I don’t know where we’ll be ten years from now.  I do know you were one of my dearest friends in high school (that’s four long years), and that we went through our “formative” years together.  Also that if I can’t remember your name when I’m old and grey it doesn’t matter, because our paths have crossed, and each will be forever different because they did.  We’ll never forget each other because we’ve grown and changed together.

Keep reaching for that higher plane, and always remember the simplistic beauty of the laughter we’ve shared.

Love Always,

Jenny

My evening of excavations was delightfully derailed as i tripped back to a time when i was angst-ridden and alive… So much of the goofy-assed, drunken, bon vivant that i happen to be these days can be traced back to those four incredibly formative years – with Jenny and Jeff as my best friends.

When we went to different universities in 1980, we lost touch.  The next time i spoke with Jenny?  i tracked her down in 1986 to tell her Jeff had died.  She knew why i was calling as soon as she heard my voice.

After that?  Another brief reconnection ten years ago, as i was in southern California on a business trip.  We had found each other by e-mail a few months prior, and planned to meet for dinner.  Our lives had taken decidedly different paths, but we were able to pick up the conversation as if we’d been in constant contact through the years.

Her route?  From teaching English literature in the Los Angeles public schools, she followed a path that led to law school, and eventually to private family law practice.  She was delighted to find that i’d survived the dark years and managed to follow my girlish dream of being a scientist.  Not quite astronaut, but we both considered it a success in that i hadn’t been found dead in a gutter.

After finding the inscribed books, i grabbed a beer, and set about a “missing person” search.  Found her.  Sent an e-mail to let her know that as an 18 year-old, she’d successfully managed to reach forward in time.  i also thanked her for being such an erudite little shit that she could reach in and play with my heart from so far away – in time and distance.

time traveling

Here’s to old friends.  Here’s to time travel.

24 thoughts on “Time Traveling

    • Thanks, Cat! Still left wondering if the e-mail got to her… odd how my brain goes right back into “adolescent” mode. “Will she write? Is she ignoring me?” Ha!

  1. *sigh* what is it? is it the time of the year? the season? age? (fuck, that can’t be it, i’m fucking OLDER than you) shit. *double sigh* i’m glad you could reconnect. jaysus, sweet pea, i’m sunday lit and i shouldn’t be typing. cheers, honey! xoxoxo

    • It is a one-sided reconnection – i have been happily tripping through those years for the past few days and enjoying it. Now wondering… hoping the e-mail found the target, hoping she’s ok, hoping…. and wanting very much to close this loop!

  2. She wrote that inscription when she was in high school?! Did I get that right? That’s a fairly evolved string of scentences for someone so young. The good part of Facebook (there’s an evil part, too) is that these long disconnections between friends need never happen again.

    • She was 16 in 1978. And yes, she was pretty good with the written and spoken word – which is what led to her English Literature gig and later law school. We were quite the avant garde set back in those days – protesting this or that, causing a minor disturbance here or there…. or hijacking the daily announcements with pure, random weirdness. hippies born 10 years too late.

      She is not on the book of faces. And i’m not surprised she has nothing to do with it. When i first got out there, she was one of the first people i tried to find. Found a lot of high school eeejits instead – and have been reminded why i didn’t like them 30 years ago.

    • It is a beautiful book – she always had amazing taste in art and literature. And yes, she was pretty good with the words. Those two books will stay in my bookshelf for a long time.

  3. Hmmm ….. I left a comment here the other day and now it’s just *poofed* into another dimension!
    Kinda (but not really) like you and your excavations …. going back to another time, another place, another you.
    Time and distance fade away when reading such amazingly insightful words and reliving the closeness and fun shared.
    I hope you get a chance to reconnect again! :D

    • i’ve been on the road, and there has been some weirdness with my connectivity. glad you came back! Still hoping to hear from her, but perhaps she’s gone “poof”. May try to track her down through another means… they still have phone books, right?

  4. The happy memories that sometimes surface can be warm and a lot of fun. And if not? Deep sigh and the memory is packed into that box again. I find I’ve picked up with some, moved away from others.And been damn’ glad I’ve completely lost touch with others! ;-)

    • i still find myself inserting distance between myself and those who reveal a little too much mean, or noisy ignorance. simultaneously? i find myself appreciating those good folks a lot more…

  5. Ah Daisy, what a beautiful post. You should count yourself lucky that you had a best friend in high school. I went through that period of my life in an isolation chamber of introversion; my best friend was my piano. It never gave me a book with an inscription although we still have a realtionship…. So glad you have been able to connect with your past. Whenever I go back and try that my attempts fall into the crevasses of the internet and are lost in that glacier of information.

    • i was not at my best in those years, but was fortunate to have good people with me for the transit. jeff died, at 26, just as he was getting his life aligned. jenny? we just went onwards – and perhaps because i was so much work back in those days, we just both quietly agreed to move onward. i’ve since reconnected with other acquaintances from those years – but i miss that deeper connection that we shared. in the end? we come into it alone, and go out the same way. high school? over-rated. my best years have been ever since…

    • me too. kinda bumming that i haven’t heard back yet. in my imaginary universe? i was hoping to pull together her response, and our plans for a meet up, as a follow up post. it’s a nice universe, this imaginary place where i live…

  6. The inscriptions become more beloved than the contents sometimes. I’ve got a couple of very simple dedications and best wishes in some books, no more than a line or two, which are very dear.

    • i’m not one to read poetry so i can’t say that i’ve ever read the short book. looked through the photographs many times in the other book – and they are incredible – but can’t say that i’ve read the words alongside. it’s the inscriptions that matter…

  7. Lady, you and your friends were much more literate than mine, the only thing any of us remembers is the phrase “what’s in the bag”, the reply, “i got pot in the bag”, other than that we all draw blanks, wonder why?

    • oh, we had our “what’s in the bag” moments. a LOT of those. we liked to think we were fairly worldly and unusually bright, but in retrospect, i decided that we weren’t…. maybe i should reconsider that thought.

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