Sunday, July 09, 2006

did i mention he bought a $40,000 cow?

I was told that I could not attend Berkeley after being allowed to apply. My only choices and the only universities I applied to were: UC Berkeley and University of Oregon. I was accepted to both. My only choice then was Oregon. I was livid. I could not understand why my parents had allowed me to apply (and pay the $75 app. fee) to Berkeley when they knew they would not allow me (pay for me) to be there. I thought it ridiculous that my father would rather pay out of state tuition for me to be much further away. I am his youngest girl; I immediately took it to heart and wanted to be as far away as I could. He apparently thought (thinks) the Bay Area is the devil's playground and could not give his consent for his daughter to live there.

I traveled with my mother to visit Oregon and find an apartment that I could afford. My parents were willing to pay for the education but as to how I would survive, that was all me. I later will thank them for this ability. I found an apartment but a job was alluding me; I had never had to contemplate where my rent or food would come from. I broke down and decided to stay nearby.

I enrolled at a distant Jr. College. This allowed me to move out without leaving my comfort zone. I had a lot of fun. I rarely went to class and failed most of my classes. I had left high school with 2 (partial) linguistic scholarships and here I was at a Jr. College. But, Oh MY GOD, how good was it to make my own decisions. Do drugs if I decided to and believe me I did. It was a freedom my sorry luthern brethern ass had never freely experienced!

My second year there, after taking some time off to travel Europe, I enrolled in an English class. The first day I found my parking, walked to class, and matched strides with another girl, her name was Alisha. We went into the same classroom and thought nothing of it. This continued for weeks; we would always arrive at the same time, it was weird. Into the semester, I arrived at class (amazingly, she wasn't by my side) and was immediately inundated with questions as to the whereabouts of my "friend."

"My whom?", I inquired.

"Your friend."

"Oh, uhm, I dunno, we're not really friends."

"Oh. Okay."

This continued every time one of missed class. Finally, we had to group up to discuss All The Pretty Horses by Cormac McCarthy. BLECH. I hated this book more than anything I have hated in my entire life and it turns out Alisha hated it too. We started to talk, realized we had the same Biology class, talked some more and she quickly became my best friend. She still is.

We came to find out that our shoe size was the same, as was our clothing size. I don't think this matters with men but with women it's a godsend if the other wears a similar size. No? After knowing me for all of 3 months, she was the only person to show up for the weekend in San Francisco to celebrate my 21st birthday. She had a 9 month old baby. How cool is that! We had a great time and have had many since then. I will never forget that.

We don't live near one another any more and haven't for 5 or 6 years. We talk when we can and see each other, maybe, once a year at most. But I can't help thinking that she will be my best friend for a long time to come because of the nutritional value of her frienship at the beginning. Her absence or mine, has no bearing on our friendship. When we talk it's as if not a day has gone by and quickly, without envy, we catch each other up on our lives. She is true and she is my friend.

I thank my parents ( almost completely) for refusing to send me to Berkeley. I met a great person (and who am I kidding, did a lot of great drugs) as a result. I also wanted to thank the other 2 women who read my blog. I have no idea who you are, while understanding completely where you come from. I read your sites and am comforted.

Yeah, and by the way, instead of sending me to a really good school, my dad, the farmer, bought a $40,000 cow!


Alisha said...

Through good and bad, from country to country, I can't imagine a time when you are more than an email or phone call away! Maybe even someday we will be within drving distance of each other again. Thank you for your friendship, I cherish it daily! Love you and miss seeing you terribly!

Food Mum said...

I'm enjoying reading your blog too - it's great to meet you!