- My mum… it is difficult to pick out individual memories… I recall so many magical little things that made everything with her beautiful. I remember as a child I would always say that the most beautiful thing I had ever seen in my life was my mum sleeping and I still reckon that holds a spot in the top five. I loved her face… her laugh and smile. There are a flurry of memories from my childhood especially that were made distinctive because of my mum… things like trips to crazy horse mountain or summer visits to embassy suites. When she was still able to drive I remember car rides with her being miraculous… we would sing and talk and there was NEVER anything I couldn’t talk to her about. I remember the months prior to my moving to the UK, how I would go visit her in the home at least once a week and we would eat and sit around and watch films or telly… those days with her were the most special because we had so many of them and because she always made me feel so loved. I remember the last time I saw her in person… November 19th 2004… that was the morning I left for England. She was devastated. I remember how her face looked, how hard she held me and what she smelled like. I remember the last time I spoke to her… It was horrific, but I would have regretted it for the rest of my life had I not rung her that night. She told me how much she loved me, that I meant everything to her…. My mum was the most wonderfully beautiful, giving woman in the world and I wouldn’t trade her or my memories of her for anything.
- Janey… the memories I have with my janeyface are so much more different than any of the memories I will have with anybody else in the world. Our time together is spent in a beautiful little flurry of being lewd, inappropriate, offensive and utterly and completely ourselves. When she and I are together we fall into a world that completely spins for just the two of us… nobody else exists. Chris always hated it when she came to visit and theo still hates it when we are together because we immediately begin to set one another off in the most improper and fabulous of ways. My memories of her date back to the first time we met in person… that fabulous summer’s day that she came up to derby and stepped off the bus to my little smiling face. The next night we began our string of outrageous memories by writhing all over the floor of the local pub to bon jovi’s ‘always’ with claire. Every single janeydaniepartytime since has just been better and better. Racist shopping adventures, lesbian chats, hot-boxing her lounge with our horrendous gas and more shopping adventures than anybody could ever fathom. Janey is such a beautifully wonderful person and I will no doubt know her and continue making offensive memories with her until one of us dies of some horrendous disease or car accident.
- Alastair… over the last five years the bulk of my beautiful memories have come from pow pow…he and I have gone on some of the most amazingly fabulous adventures ever. He is the one person I have watched more films with, had more cups of tea with and talked to more than anybody else. Things as simple as all our swimming dates two years ago will fall high on the list of beautiful memories I have in my life. Most of the moments I spend with him are extraordinary for me because I exist in complete awe of him… he is an astoundingly beautiful, talented and magical person and to spend as much time as I do with him and to be as close to him as I am makes me feel so outrageously special. Every day I get to see him makes me feel like the things I do and say are worth something because he agrees with or admires it. There are just so many memories to pick from… if I had to name one particularly beautiful memory, I would have to hark back to the night the incident happened (September 26th 2008). The whole night was beautiful despite the obviously horrific event. Pow pow and I had gone swimming, went out for a cup of tea at big blue with alex and jaacqy, moved on to wetherspoons where I bore witness to his sally jessi impression for the first time and then on to the rest of the night… post-incident, jaacqy and I went back to pow pow’s and I laid on the couch talking to mark until he returned home and immediately laid on top of me and held me for ages. He just laid there and hugged me. He held me like he was trying to hold all the pain out of me and to this day, nobody has ever been successful at giving me a better cuddle, ever… I doubt they ever will.
- Concertina Turner… the summer of 2007 was made perfect because of one thing. That thing was concertina turner and the butchers. I honestly couldn’t believe it when claire and mark asked me to be in the band… I never showed any outward abilities musically… why ME?! Who bloody cares, is what I answer now! That was the best time of my life. Playing music with the five of them was the most fun I have ever had. Those months that we played together were completely fuelled by chris’s homemade mead and the cheers of drunken onlookers. There are so many swirling memories that I can grasp out of the air, but when I have to pick just one, it is always jerry… I LOVE to remember how jerry and I used to watch one another when we played. He was such a beautiful man and I love every single song we ever had the chance to play together.
- Dane... there is not one single memory I don’t cherish about this boy. I drive him insane during every conversation asking him to tell me what things he remembers or what his favourite memories are. Those fabulous months in the summer of 2001 were so, so special... the random late-night car journeys, the trip to the water tower, our first kiss on the corner of Evans Avenue and east 17th Stret, the nine times he and i went to see shrek together at the cinema… all these things made up the summer that shaped my heart and the pace it beats at now. The most special memory I have of him is the last time I saw him in person. It was March 6th and I can remember every single tiny detail of those last ten minutes we spent together with perfect recollection. I remember how he smelled (of his deodorant and taco john’s), exactly how tall he was, how hard he held me, the fact that he couldn’t get out more than one sentence for the emotion and the way he held my hand when we parted ways… that memory will only be trumped with the first time we meet again, which I can only imagine will be the single most beautiful memory in the history of beautiful memories.
- Mini Mart… hands-down the greatest job I have ever had in my life… working the graveyard shift at that petrol station for those eight months was the best time in my teenage life. Everyone knew me and loved me and I met the most incredible array of people. You never had the same night working in a place like that… I still think back to all the special regular customers I had and all the fun shenanigans that I got up to working there with great fondness… ask me to tell you some of the stories some time, you’ll love them
- Chris… despite the crap he and I went through towards the end I am still able to recall very well all the beautiful moments he and I shared. I remember how much I used to hate him when we first started talking and how, despite that animosity, I couldn’t WAIT for him to come online next so I could tell him about my day and ask him about England. I remember how nervous I was to ask him for his email address for the first time. I remember the first time I saw him in the airport… a fresh-faced 18-year-old on her first international journey. I was terrified and excited and I didn’t know what to do with myself. I remember exactly how he looked and exactly how long I watched him until he noticed me (42 seconds). I remember how nervous I was in the back room at the registrar’s, waiting to be allowed to walk down the aisle to my waiting fiancé. I remember our first dance as husband and wife. I remember the day we walked out to the pet shop to pick out our guinea pigs and how excited we were to play with them when we got home. There are so, so many things I remember. So many special things that only he and I would find beautiful, but that have offered the perfect amount of wonderful to my life thus far.
- Ashley... the memories i have with this girl are so SO huge and outrageously beautiful that i could never, ever pin down a small list of memories her and i have created together. when i think of this girl i am immediately submerged into an ocean of beautiful thrifting adventures, late-night car rides, finding god-awful clothes in ross and limitless village inn dates (WITH RANCH DRESSING ON THE SIDE!!). she has been the sparkle that made me who i am and i can never, ever do our memories justice. our epic summer of wonderment was everything hollywood makes them out to be, they are life-changing, forever memorable and worth every single second of it. she has been my rock in so many situations and our memories have fueled me through some horrible times. i simply adore to think about all the other memories we will make.... meeting more frightening people at Arc or watching more mullets at the mall... every memory i have with her i cherish more than most.
here's to a billion more.