It’s a Saturday morning and I have just sat down at my new office desk... a worn out wooden coffee table filled with mug stains and stories. I’m looking out onto 7th avenue in Melville from my new favourite writers corner and the sun has come out to flirt with the idea that spring is here. I’m at Love and Revolution, a teensy weensy little coffee shop in my old neck of the woods and have decided that Saturday mornings mean, amongst many things, that one is allowed a glass of wine before noon.
I opened my email hoping to find one reply to the 23 job applications I have sent through this week. I figure it’s a win:win situation really; either I will open my hotmail account to find the following response:
“Hi Carly, we’ve just read your email regarding the writing supernova position with the exorbitant salary and without hesitation we’ve decided you are our girl. In fact we hadn’t even opened up your CV or writing samples because from the instant we saw your application, we knew we were dealing with a wordsmith extraordinaire, a savant scripting sorcerer, a kind of genie genius of the un-generic. Would you be so kind as to immediately join our team of whizz kids and may we call you Calamity Creative? P.S. We encourage mid day drinking and irresponsible spending of petty cash here, I hope this is not going to be a problem?”
OR my Hotmail will look up at me with pleading seduction and say:
“Carly, I have nothing for you... because this Bohemian lifestyle looks good on you girl. You’ve stopped wearing make up on weekdays, you’re cardio workouts consist of hours of pleasure Pilates with Your Guy, you walk around all day licking ice creams and smiling like a dumbass, you’ve even become one of those arty trendy writer kids with no money cavorting from coffee shop to coffee shop in a pair of bruges and when you put your head down on a pillow... you ACTUALLY sleep. Ride the wave sister. Completely off topic... your high school reunion is coming up. SOON. Namaste”
No ways. It has not been 10 years since I left high school. That is impossible.
Carly: “Can I get a refill on his dry white please!”
10 years. 10 YEARS. I have to keep saying it to myself hoping that at some point it will sink in and I’ll accept that this time 10 years ago I was just leaving the security of school and taking a giant gallop into the unknown. Who was I back then? Who am I now? And where is my wine?
I close my eyes and picture myself as a young 17 year old... my long dark wavy hair, my heart bulging with innocence, my head somewhere up in the sky where nothing is complicated or serious in any real way, my world turning and me dancing along the equator with a band of misfits alongside me. Some of those misfits went from being the centre of my world to very distant stars, far away enough that I only think of them when I’m looking up and far into the universe, but close enough that I still run my fingers over the faded scars we left behind and wonder if they’ll lighten enough for me to forget them. Funny how life moves us in circles and how everything spins you out and away from the apex of it all, into someplace that only just resembles the spot where you once stood.
I haven’t spoken to Layla in over 2 years... in time our once colourful cobbled path began to split until the small patch of grass between us became so big we could only nearly reach each others fingertips and then eventually she was so far away I could barely see her waving to me from across the universe. There’s a glorious glue that still keeps me sweetly sticking to some of the others, the kind of glue that allows you to slingshot away for ages and then shoot back as if you’d never even come unstuck. And isn’t it all to easy to get stuck... stuck on resentment for stolen boyfriends, stuck on stupid decisions, stuck at the starting block for a race you never entered and stuck on the middle of a desert island halfway between who you were and who you are.
Here I am 10 years later... My shoes off, toes squelching an unfamiliar muddy stretch of path between them. My heart broken and put back together a handful of times, now as beautiful as the antique wood I rest my empty glass of wine on, with a home and someone spectacular (really spectacular) to love and take good care of it. And in a way I’m exactly where I always was, holding the flag to my own revolution. About to gallop once again along the equator of my life, with a band of misfits (new and old) and gypsies to play the tambourine and sing “Let Change happen!” and I’m going to do just that. In the words of Che Guevara “The true revolutionary is guided by feelings of love” and that’s all I have right now... I don’t have much of a clue about anything else. Does anyone?
My curser is blinking and I come back to 2012. There’s a slight hesitation and then I just do it. I RSVP yes to my reunion, to my revolution and to my lovely life.