Wednesday, December 01, 2004
echoes from the past.....
For a number of years I have been trying to track down an old childhood friend of mine. I tried Googling her, looking up her phone number, the phone number of her mom, anyone I could think of.. and couldn't find her. I knew she was a bit of a wanderer, having lived all over Canada and so I had no idea where she could be now. This was a girl I had known for 21 years and I was sad that I couldn't find her.

To make a long story short, in August I woke up one morning with her on my mind. As I laid in bed trying to fully wake up I was thinking about my search and decided I would try and spell her name slightly differently (not the usual way to spell it, but it was worth a shot) in Google. I got up, I entered her name, and damned if I didn't find a family webpage her cousin had made. It was sort of a newsletter for the whole family to keep everyone in touch about what was new, who had a baby, etc.. Much to my utter surprise my friend's cousin... had married into MY family!! There I was, jaw dropped, as I was reading "news" about someone from my family! Having recovered from that shock I scrolled down until I found out about my friend. Wow...she's married, since 2001. WOW...she's living in Switzerland!?! I was beyond excited I had finally found her.

I wrote her cousin and asked about my friend and how to reach her. He passed along her e-mail address so I e-mailed her and told her I had been searching high and low for her and was thrilled to find her. I sent a pic and told her a bit about what I am up to now. She wrote back just as enthusiastic as me, said she too had been looking for me and that she was moving back to Canada with her husband in the Fall. We were elated to have found each other again. I tried calling her but she had already moved out and was backpacking across Europe before coming back to Canada, and just as she was to return, I was heading to Israel. We didn't communicate again after those initial two e-mails, but I left my address and phone numbers with her cousin.

This weekend a friend of mine called me up to tell me about the second night of The Pixies concert he went to see (there were two shows, I went to the first, my friend went to both). He said the strangest thing had happened... he saw this girl and he thought she looked familiar so he approached her (oh yeah... life is weird!). He said to her that she was familiar but that he couldn't place her. The two of them stood for quite some time guessing at how they might know each other before she finally said... "Waitaminute... didn't you used to date [you don't need to know my full name]?", and he said yes. And so it dawned on them both, that this was my old friend talking to a guy who was my boyfriend 10 years ago. She asked about me and what was going on (she was amazed we were still friends, but it's been so long I don't even call him my "ex" anymore) and gave him her new number to give to me.
How crazy is that??? So I think I'll call her today or tomorrow. She lives somewhere about 3 hours from here I think, judging by the area code on the phone number. YAY!!!

With that in mind there is something else I have been meaning to mention (and only now as I type do I realize there's a bizarre connection). In the last year or so I have been having dreams about a guy I used to work with and became good friends with. Eventually we had a terrible falling out (I place the blame on us both, not him alone) and we have not spoken to each other since. That must have been.... hm... about 6 or 7 years ago. I had moved on and I'm sure he did the same. Every so often I see his dad at Wal-mart (his dad is a retiree, now happily taking the post as Greeter at Wal-Mart) but the man never seemed to recognize me, much to my relief. Once I even saw my old friend in the Wal-Mart but ducked between aisles to hide from him. It was bad, but I didn't know what else to do. His friendship was a can of worms I was not interested in opening again at that point.

However. As I said, I have had a number of dreams about this guy recently and have started to wonder about him and how he is doing. A lot has changed in my life and I am at a good point, with an overall feeling of being content (with the occasional twinge to move to a foreign country. LOL). When I look back at the falling out I feel a bit guilty about what happened. I know what he did was wrong, but I also know I had been wrong too. And part of me has been re-examining all this and wondering... should I track him down and apologize to him? Would he even want to hear from me or would it be too painful? Would I want to be friends with him again? What would I want out of this? I have been debating this for months. I looked online but the only trace I could find of him was a review of a White Stripes concert he wrote for a website 2 years ago. No e-mail address. :-/

As I stood in line last week for The Pixies concert last week I noticed something. The guy ahead of me... his walk was familiar. I KNOW that walk, I thought. Could it be? Could I actually be standing right behind him?? It was pouring rain at the time, and most of us had pulled a hood over our heads, and were keeping our heads down. It was dark, it was wet and it was miserable. I hurried my pace a bit as the line moved to try and get a look at this guy from the side (he was wearing a hat... the back view wasn't giving me any answers). Just as I got a glance and a confirmation it was him he turned around. Not knowing what to do I quickly (and obviously) turned around too, only now I ended up facing the person he had turned to talk to, who had walked up behind me. It was a mutual friend of ours that I hadn't seen since the falling out. I was stuck in an awkward ex-friend sandwich. Luckily, neither of them paid any attention and didn't notice/recognize me (it helps that I look a great deal different than I did back then). Part of me really wanted to grab his sleeve and reveal myself to him, but part of me felt like the timing, in the pouring rain and all, was poor. And on top of that, I was meeting other friends (the guy from the story prior) who most certainly would NOT have wanted to spend the rest of the concert hanging out and catching up. So I let the moment pass.

Of course I dreamt again about him that night and now I am left wondering... should I or shouldn't I try and contact him? I combed the internet once more, but couldn't find him. I found his parents phone number, and he is likely living with them..... but is a phone call the best way? I would rather put out feelers with an e-mail. I don't want to put the guy on the spot by just calling him up, coz I know that I might not appreciate that if someone did that to me. Is it really my place to shake his world up again? I know I have a few friends from my past that I don't ever want to hear from again, so I'd be pissed if they contacted me. Then again... I am coming with an apology, which would change everything for me if I were in that position.

*sigh* I don't know. I have to think there is a reason these people are coming back into my life.... I just want to figure out what that is, and what my role is.