… 26.11.07 @ 10:00 – Mark Gold Café, Melrose.

As we narrowly swung back from the edge of the abyss I seemed to overshoot my mark and head back in the opposite but equal direction. Invigorated by a challenge – in this case losing a multi-million rand order and thus a SBU to boot – I put my foot to the pedal and went into overdrive setting almost impossible targets that were eventually achieved. Concessions were eventually made in the end and in giving a little I stand to gain a lot. But the lessons hopefully will not go unnoticed by the Triumvirate and spur on the change that I have been pushing since returning a few months ago.

But what of it? I realised then how fragile the next few months are going to be. Not just professionally but personally as well. One doesn’t exist separate of the other right now. Over a roasted chicken, grilled veggies and grapefruit sorbet dinner, all from his backyard, dinner with the Bradley Cooper-esq guy seemed awkward. Since we have started to open up about our lives to each other as friends often do, I feel the need to hold back a little. Why? Well I’m not sure. I could imagine a million reasons but in truth I want him to see me differently. Not as I am but who I was and therefore who I can be again*.

(*… this pains me to admit but in sounding shallow I hope to sound sincere.)

But why? I have come to realise that universally you can never be loved. If you are then either you’re not being honest with those around you or you’re an aberration of society. In reaching out to some friends that I thought weren’t true it turns out that really they are. One in particular speaks very highly of me which makes me smile because in all the years we’ve known each other there has been no confirmation of his feelings. But what about all the bridges I’ve burnt, relationships that have ended or people that I’ve discarded perhaps too cavalierly in the past?

Between the bankers, paper perfect lovers and squirrels that have come into your life and left with a piece of your shattered heart you wonder, if anything, what they say about you. Why is it that we only seem to believe the negative things people say about us no matter how much evidence there is to the contrary. A neighbour, a face, an ex-boyfriend can cancel out everything we thought was once true. Odd but when it comes to life and love why do we believe our worst reviews?

A thing that particular irks me is not returning telephone calls, messages or emails. One such friend managed to get caught in the cross hairs of my last relationship with a guy that was more sewer rat that squirrel. As one of my oldest friends our friendship is, to use an overused word, complicated. Since moving away and not seeing so much of each other the unease of how things were left off does give me a moment’s pause. Did those untruthful truths finally get into his consciousness or did his pussy-whipping wife finally win?

But what about the new friends that I make? Jo’burg is such a small city that it’s inevitable that the people they know are the people I know. What then? How do you rehabilitate yourself in the eyes of new friends particularly when the baggage of the past is now packed with you on the journey going forward? I think that in life the review that you give yourself is the one that matters most. After all no one gets to see you evolve through the years like you do. At best they get a snap shot or perhaps even a preview of the person you’re ultimately maturing into. And that has to be worth something right?

Good or bad we all have our off days but the mark of a true friend is someone who takes the time to find out how your day is going, cook you a wonderful dinner that you enjoy watching an amazing sunset and then as the moon rises above into a crystal clear evening sky distract you from your days hardship with a little story about Castor and Pollux.

After all they started out as friends and now live for eternity together side by side …

 

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