So… at some point last week, Lori texted me and asked me if I’d go to Bookman’s on Saturday.
Honestly, I’m at that fearful part of the school year, when I generally over-commit myself and have no one to blame for how much I hate my life. Like every year, I’ve vowed to make better choices! I’m going to run and do yoga. I’m going to leave work by 4:30. I’m going to give myself more quiet than other people want me to have, including reading, writing, painting, and staring time every week. I’m not going to fill every night of the week, and I’m not going to plan to go to things like I’m obligated to (unless I’m actually obligated).
So I really thought about telling Lori no.
She’s pretty much never asked me to go to Bookman’s, so it felt a little fishy, but I couldn’t quite put my finger on why. Also, I pretty much never want to not see Lori. She’s one of those people who I can’t think of any circumstance that wouldn’t be much improved by her presence. Church. Running. Watching TV. Eating. Birthdays. Pound puppy walking. Travel to Peru, CA, Vegas. Hiking. Work. Parties. Yoga. I genuinely enjoy doing all of those things with Lori, so I didn’t feel like I could pass up an opportunity to hang out with her.
All night Friday, I thought about how I wanted to go to a movie by myself, but it rained and I was too lazy to consider the correct travel routes so as not to get my car stuck in a wash. Also, I don’t have the interwebs at home, so I’d have to stop at Barnes and Noble to even figure out what’s playing. So I stayed at home, had a glass of wine with Swiss chocolate, and watched two Star Trek movies (Insurrection and Nemesis for the one or two of you who have knowledge of Star Trek).
Then, Saturday, I got up and ran in the freakin’ unbearable humidity and heat. And I did some things at home, and got ready for Lori to come over, having every intent of spending the evening at a coffee shop, then at the movies.
Then Lori came and we went to Bookman’s and browsed. Then we went to Sonic, where I got a crap-ton of food, which is at least a little out of character for me. Sonic isn’t exactly my cup o’ tea, but an enormous hot dog sounded spectacular after my morning run.
Then we got back to the house, and I intended to eat the food, then see if Steve and Lori wanted to go to the movie with me.
But when we walked in, there were yellow streamers. And Kendra’s parents. And candles.
And I couldn’t figure out what the hell was going on. Had Kendra thrown a party and not invited me? That seemed weird, but not impossible.
Then, Maria was there and she was all, “I’m sorry for your loss.”
And that’s when I saw the programs.
With pictures of Anne and D’Artagnan.
And the projector was there, pointed at the wall. And there were a lot of rubber ducks.
You see, my roommate and friends conspired to throw me a surprise duck funeral. Some of them shared memories of the ducks. There was a poetry reading. A slideshow complete with Sara McLachlan “I Will Remember You” soundtrack. A children’s story. A 21-duck-salute with legit duck calls (one of which sounded very like Anne in the morning when she wanted me to feed her).
And it blew my mind, because I don’t think I’ve ever had a surprise party thrown for me.
And everyone wore black, except for Madelyn who was wearing her duck onesie, and there were even some fake tears.
And after it was all over, I felt like I finally had closure ;-) and maybe I could move on and bring some new little ducklings into the house, even though no one could ever replace Anne and D’Artagnan.
Also, I was gifted with a functioning dryer after a year or hanging my clothes on a line outside or all over the house so that my under garments were rather public.
I’ve got pretty decent friends, eh?