Thursday, 2 March 2017

#52Stories, Week 8, What have been the most important and valued friendships of your life ?

These two, these are them.

I've already told you how important and special Jo has been as a friend through my whole life.

My other bestie was Donna. We had a bunch of fun after we met in Sydney back in 1980 !

I had gone to Sydney in 1979 with another friend and ended up flatting with her sisters for 12 months. Things were good there, and we parted friends when they returned to New Zealand. I needed to find myself a new place to live with the minimal belongings I owned.

My initial thought was to find a place on my own, I'd done living with other people by then. But, that isn't what happened and it was probably the best thing ever as I ended up with a bunch of friends who came from all sorts of backgrounds, and from all around Australia.

I moved into a boarding house. I applied for a room in one in Homebush, which was a lovely old villa with wide verandahs. But ended up with a room in Campsie. The guy who owned the boarding houses - at least three in Sydney, staffed them with a housekeeper. In this case the housekeeper from Homebush was relocating to Campsie and she had picked which boarders should move with her.

Sue, the housekeeper did all the cooking and cleaning through the week and ensured there was food for us all to feed ourselves over the weekends. She and her husband and 3 kids lived onsite.

When I first moved in I shared a room with a girl named Liz. She was from near Newcastle (Red Head I think). She was only there a few weeks before moving back home. Our room could sleep three, and just before Liz left another girl moved in. Her boyfriend dropped her off with her things. 

It wasn't long before we were inseparable, as thick as thieves. We had so much fun, playing cards, drinking (just a bit), playing pool, weekends in Forster, weekends and late nights shopping or just hanging out. She was younger than me but that didn't matter. We moved to another boarding house in Hurstville and were roomies again there. 

We bought a car for $50 off one of our housemates, it had failed it's permit inspection thingie because it had a hole in the muffler. We fixed it by supergluing a 5 cent piece over the hole. Lots of fun times were had driving around in Bertha.

Swimming at Wanda beach in the middle of June. What ?! Were we crazy ?? I think maybe.

Later when I was living in Bexley she moved in too. Then when we were living in Queensland, so was she. There was never a dull moment with her around, and so many laughs.

I don't know how we managed to stay in touch with no cellphones. We both moved around a lot, but the mail always got through.

When we moved back from Adelaide to Sydney we stayed with her and her little family. Our truck full of furniture - and two cats - parked out the back until we moved into our own place.

She was always there for me, my only actual dinkum bestie the entire time I lived in Australia, and both times I moved back to New Zealand we kept our connection strong. Trips to the zoo with our babies, shopping, coffee or just sitting chatting and passing the time. ALWAYS catching up when I visited Sydney, staying sometimes and others just arriving at the door and saying "SURPRISE !!"

We went through a lot together, I don't know what I would have done without her when I was a brand new Mum, living far away from my family. We had differences, but never arguments. She made the BEST cheesecake. She did ironing to earn a bit of extra money - anyone who willingly does ironing deserves a medal in my book. 

Life takes such unexpected turns sometimes, and all of a sudden she was gone. Taken from her family and her friends too soon. She always had a smile, and her family were her world. I miss her so much.

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