Suz is one of my best friends. Even though she always wins the “Who wore it best?” contest, which is annoying. We first met a decade and a half ago, when I moved to Jackson, Wyoming, and chose not to be intimidated by her barbie doll good looks and warm, engaging personality, and be her friend anyway. And I’m glad I did! Because it turns out instead of being plastic and superficial, Suzy has a heart of gold! I had to ignore that too, because seriously, beauty and depth? I can’t have one thing Suz?
We essentially raised our equally crazy kids together, except hers raised better than mine, but I think that’s because I killed the yeast 😉
Suz is the kind of friend who can walk into my house without knocking, not judge me for the Fruit Loops spilled all over my floor, or the pile of dirty dishes in my sink. She will hold a Kleenex to my kid’s nose and tell them to blow when they need it. Most importantly, Suzy knows where I hide the chocolate chips and has no problem making a bee-line for the spot when she needs some. She will open my cupboard without asking, pour herself a generous handful of semi-sweet morsels, and flops onto my couch, sighing, “I’m going to kill my children….” she knows I’m there to listen. Listen, and grab the rest of the bag of chocolate chips before I flop down next to her, hold out my hand so she can share a few of those chips and say something clever like, “I already killed my husband. Twice. Just to make sure the first one took.” And then we’ll laugh, and toss back another shot of chocolate chips like it was vodka.
In the majority of my relationships, I am considered the crazy one. I am spontaneous, adventurous and don’t always pay attention to where I am going and walk into mens bathrooms or glass walls. I joke with friends that I need a keeper. My friends joke with me that I need to be kept on a leash, and if someone lets me off the leash, they are responsible for what happens. But in truth we balance each other out. I pull a little of the spontaneous out of them, and they install a little of the cautious in me; Yin and Yang.
But with Suzy, we are same same, we are Yin and Yin. In fact, I sometimes feel like I am the responsible one. And that’s saying something. We both have ADHD, a stranger danger alert system that’s never worked right, and a propensity to do things without thinking them through. For example, taking a Vespa scooter used mostly for local sight seeing, on a freeway in Prague. During a rain storm. (If you need a visual think Dumb and Dumber). From the back of the scooter I remember thinking Suzy was driving like she was trying out for a role as a mission impossible stunt woman, “Lean into the curve!” She’d yell, while I wrapped my arms around her like a boa constrictor. Rain drops fell laser fast, hitting us like small metorors. The wind as ferocious as a hurricane while the hard plastic ends of the draw strings from Suzy’s hoodie repeatedly smacked me in the face like some sort of Chinese torture technique. Suzy buried the needle at the lethal speed of fifty miles per hours, we buzzed along like a wet but determined honey bee while semi’s blasting past, drenching us with a cold wave of oily water.
“I think we are lost!” Suzy yelled into the wind. Lost, or we had just taken what we like to refer to as an alternate route. We are especially gifted at finding little known alternate routes, like through the service roads of closed down nunnaries or the rutted dirt road of some farmer’s field. Consequently, I had to find directions on my phone, which I precariously held in one hand while gripping Suzy around the waist with the other hand. I would try to yell instructions into Suzy’s ear, which is nearly impossible, since our golf ball helmets kept us from getting very close to each other, not to mention the roar of rush hour traffic swallowed my words before they ever reached her. I would lean towards Suzy like one of those bobble heads, my helmet hitting hers, shouting something like, “We need to take the next exit!” Suzy would turn her head back at me yelling, “I can’t hear you!” And I would frantically motion Suzy to turn back around, because usually it’s helpful to be looking ahead when driving. Eventually, we came up with a clever system where I would tap her when we needed to exit or turn, and point frantically towards the exit ramp or traffic sign. We were like a well oiled machine. Except, well, you know what they say about water and oil. Even after we successfully exited the freeway, but kept loosing signal on google maps, learned the hard way to look at for low hanging branches and that my mom was right when she used to tell me, “Your bladder is a ballon” it can expand way more than you think It can. Also, there is a severe shortage of public bathrooms in Europe. Both of these factors made the bumps in the road even more fun.
Suz and I started working for the Airlines on the same day in May of 2010. The industry hasn’t recovered yet.
She’s my go to when disaster strikes, or I want to get lost on a mountain, drive on the wrong side of the road, belt out the incorrect lyrics to seventies songs, take the wrong trail or eat an entire chocolate cake, on the floor of my closet. Suzy’s my girl.
She’ll even lick up the crumbs.
Some of our many superpowers include, being able to easily jump between 18 different topics without ever actually finishing a complete sentence. We can also walk into a room and immediately forget what we came into the room to retrieve.
Being together is always an adventure, even if it’s just going picking up the kids from school.
We like to try to escape Jackson Hole, at least once a year.
Yes, I did just type escape Jackson Hole. I mean you don’t know how we suffer. It’s like “Enough with the beauty already, give me some sewer rats and overflowing garbage for a change!” Actually, what we are really escaping is not the Tetons, but the loved ones we leave behind, as well as the dirty laundry, dirty dishes, teenage drama and peed on toilet seats they leave behind.
Even though we have a lot in common, and help remind each other not to run with scissors, the real reason I hang out with Suzy is because I’m hoping to borrow some of her evening wear. Plus, she drives this cool pink corvette she got even without even selling Mary kay!
You can’t let me have one thing Suz.
Not ONE thing!?
You can follow all our travel adventures and misadventures @ middleseatbackrow.org