Aging gracefully

I ducked out of the office at noon, phone in hand, ready for my date.  I rode the elevator  the eighteen floors down to the ground floor and walked out into the bustle of Queen street – the center of downtown Brisbane.  Turning into post office square, I dialed a number I know by heart.

Across the line came my best friend’s voice.  Across an ocean, she was trying to out-walk the rain with her dog, Beatrice.  We have a long-established tradition of planning phone dates over the years of our friendship, as our lives have gone in different geographical directions.  These dates provide us with the opportunity to talk to a sounding board that understands our individual quirks, because more often than not, those individual quirks are also our own.

Today’s conversation, like so many in the past, covered our individual lives and the small dramas they entail.  Like she always does, my Lifey put things into perspective and helped me laugh at the sources of stress and frustration in my life.  But today’s conversation was different, we both had virtually no relationship drama to relate.   It was a bit mind-blowing. Here we were focusing on our own personal growth and putting our energies into bettering ourselves rather than embroiling ourselves in relationship theatrics.  We both were acting quite adult.

After the conversation ended, I headed back up to the office, thinking that this moment would always be seared in my mind. After all, our relationship was crystallized long ago by the bonding experience of running and deconstructing our lives together.  And now,  my Lifey and I, had come to a point – talking across oceans, about lives so drama-free that they might be considered boring. In that moment, the present and future all seemed wrapped up, and the unfolding of our lives in strange and unpredicted ways was extremely tangible.  The pace of time, and our changing natures felt altogether too real – but at the same time, comfortable and right.

Just a few months ago, she sent me a cute email telling me that 5 years ago, on the same day, I had nearly been kicked out of a hostel in Santiago, Chile on my birthday, at about 5 am.

What a difference a few years can make.

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