Why did I even write this list?
The point of the list isn’t to be able to say I did these things, whether they’re the little things or the super-huge-scary ones. It isn’t to appease my Type-A personality with nice little check marks and “completed on . . . ” beside each item. It isn’t to be able to brag about finishing a mini-bucket list.
The point of the list is directly related to the way I’ve decided I want to live my life, and that’s fearlessly. Or maybe not fearlessly, because I’m always going to be afraid of things.
I want to live courageously. I want to have at least faced my fears, even if I am unable to conquer them.
I don’t want to be controlled by my fears.
—– Sunday —–
Being alone in big places scares me. I don’t know what it is about it, but I always feel more at ease when I have a friend with me. Maybe I’m a closet-extrovert, or maybe I just like what’s familiar.
I ventured into the extremely unfamiliar a week ago.
I’ve only flown once, and it was a nonstop straight from Hobby to the Washington International Airport, where I met my aunt and spent a four day weekend with her. Last week, though, I flew from Hobby to Baltimore, where I got off the first plane and got onto another plane headed for Albany . . .
I first began talking to Rebekah when we were both fourteen, and our first conversation consisted of “Hi, I’m Rebekah; I live in New York; I’m a vegetarian and I love the Beatles,” and “I’m Jami; I live in Texas; I love meat, and I hate the Beatles . . . ”
And somehow we became besties.
And this year we decided that I was going to go stay with them for a week, right before Bekah and Will got married.
Honesty hats on, I was expecting it to be awkward, but it was the most relaxed thing ever, considering we’d never actually met face-to-face. But we’d spent six years messaging, texting, writing letters, phone calling, and video chatting with each other, so it wasn’t like meeting a new person; it was like being with someone you’re really close to and it just happening to be the first time hanging out in person.
It became a running joke that week about how neither of us were “over it.”
Rebekah, William, Rachel, and Micaelina came to the airport to pick me up and take me to New Berlin, where Bekah actually lives.
I think the first thing we talked about were the mountains.
“They’re smaller than mountains, but bigger than hills . . . they’re Hiltons!”
And we ate some really pretty looking sushi, because I’d never had real sushi before. Well. Once. With the Hongs, but Bekah and I always talked about eating sushi together and I loved it and now I have a perpetual craving, but moving along. Sunday evening when I got there was sushi and fro-yo and talking books (and movies and wedding stuff and all sorts of other things) up in Bekah’s room, all four of us girls, until we were so tired we all crashed.
—– Monday —–
That’s actually a funny story. Bekah has been referring to me as her “BFFL,” (Best Friend For Life) but I thought she was calling me her “waffle.”
So. The Conboys now refer to me as “The Waffle.”
Ten minutes in and I had a nickname. That was exciting.
After the parade (which left us with a mountain of candy and not enough people who wanted to help us eat it) we went to the Cider Mill, which . . . I fell in love with. It’s this little country store sort of place where they make apple cider and pies and jams and salsas and all sorts of yummy things to eat, and they’ve got free samples all around the building. You could walk around twice and call it a meal.
I liked it a lot. We all know how I feel about food. Bekah and Rachel feel about the same way, which is really exciting. You know people are good people when they love food.
Seriously. It was great. And they’ve got ducks. Who doesn’t like water fowl?
I think we made about four circuits around the Cider Mill before we checked out and hit up a little coffee shop called Stagecoach. I got my favorite drink ’cause I wanted to compare it to Brew N’ Bake’s (I have a thing about locally owned coffee shops – they’re the best thing ever) and it was almost as good as BNB’s.
This place was adorable. There’s a front porch with a little table and a couple of chairs, and the inside has a ton of seating, all benches and mismatched chairs, and then there’s a back patio with trees and cobblestones and the blue, blue sky above and ivy growing all over iron fences –
After Stagecoach, we went back to William’s for a game of Quelf before an evening of more chatting and some crafting (flower crowns for the wedding party).
I think one of the best parts of the entire trip was riding in the car with Rebekah and
Rachel, singing whatever we happened to be in the mood for at the top of our lungs with the windows down and the sunroof rolled back.
New York, or, at least, upstate New York is a gorgeous place.
We watched 17 Again that night, the three of us piled on Rachel’s bed.
I think we spent most of the movie discussing how much we appreciated Zac Efron’s face.
—– Tuesday —–
Tuesday was a good day for cruising. The weather was fantastic when Bekah and I set off for Utica.
We went for a specific purpose, I swear, but I think we got distracted about a million and two times and ended up spending way too much money on things we didn’t really need, except we managed to rationalize everything.
We’re good like that.
We spent the entire day away from home, shopping for craft supplies, last-minute wedding details, sunglasses, sandals, and some sort of nice “best friend” piece of jewelry.
It took us about ten minutes to decide which design we wanted ’cause they’ve got so many, but when we saw that one, we were both like, “THAT’S THE ONE.”
It was an easy decision. Except for the fifteen minutes we spent wandering around the mall, trying to talk ourselves (Uh, talk Bekah) into spending that much money on a bracelet.
I don’t remember at what point it was that we ended up in a Starbucks (sorry, Brew N’ Bake) but I talked Bekah into giving them ridiculous names that they resisted calling out when our drinks were done.
But they did, through barely contained laughter and embarrassment.
—– Wednesday —-
Wednesday was a good day, too, and our last day of going crazy driving everywhere. We went to Oneonta, as a group this time. Rachel and Mic went with us and we did some more shopping for the wedding.
Of course, we made time for food.
Lunch was at the Yellow Deli, this really adorable place that looks like a Hobbit hole on the inside. They make really good sandwiches.
That was followed by coffee at Capresso, a really posh looking coffee shop along the main street that runs through Oneonta.
We also spent some time in this really cute park that beats every park I’ve ever been to around my area (sorry, guys). It was a little muggy and wet because it had rained that night, but we toughed it out and pulled out Bekah’s emergency sleeping bag to lay out on a little hill.
We also finished our crafting (four hair clips, two flower crowns, and one tutu later . . . ) and watched Hot Bods, I mean, Warm Bodies, before dispersing for sleep and ended up talking for a couple of hours.
That was the bomb, let me tell you. We got up early and Rachel packed us a “date
picnic, but without the boys,” and we sat by the lake after walking around it and Mic showed me some yoga and I had a baguette fight with Bekah.
It was ferocious. I was scared for my life.
We decided that it was the first of what will be a yearly event, picnicking all cute just the four of us.
Except next time we listen to The Smart One and get two baguettes.
We filmed a video for a vlog there, that Micaelina is going to finish SOMEDAY.
That evening was crazy. Mic had to go home by a certain time, and I spent the afternoon
repacking my stuff and trying to get my boarding passes printed, which was an adventure in and of itself, but it got done. And we spent the evening just hanging out in Rachel’s room, drinking tea and talking until we decided to go up a mountain to watch the sunset.
—– Friday . . . —–
. . . was basically the saddest day ever.
That’s all I’ve got.