Recently, my boyfriend and I watched that episode of The Simpsons where Milhouse and his mom move to Capital City and Milhouse goes all bling bling and Bart is instantaneously lonely. I've never had my best friend move away before. Until Amelia left.
I moved to Austin last month, just in time to catch some quality time with my best friend, Amelia, before she moved back to her home state of Arizona. This move occurred on Friday. Amelia, the trooper, drove all 900 miles in one day. And I rode the bus wearing my "Where the heck is Copperas Cove, TX? t-shirt that Amelia brought me from her now former town.
I found myself at some of the places Amelia and I went the first time I came to Austin, and looking for her favorite ice cream flavor (Vosges Naga - a curry flavor - weird but delicious!) at Whole Foods. I couldn't write about it. Standing at the bus stop I texted her:
"Some jerk is taking up the whole bus stop bench with his leg."
"Ew now he moved and his fat hairy crack is falling out of his pants!"
"Better crack than junk!"
The bus was late. It was just after rush hour. A long trail of traffic stretched down Lamar from the stop light. Two old men in a pick up truck were waving and moving their lips. In New York I would have ignored them, but apparently in Texas talking to strangers on the side of the road is totally normal and almost expected. I took off my headphones.
"Take 190 from I35!"
Before the traffic moved, I told the old man about Amelia and he told me that she was lucky, and gave Cove the thumbs-down. I texted her again.
"Some old dude in a truck saw me at the bus stop and gave me directions to Cove."
"Srs. He said you're lucky!"
"Don't I know it!"
And she is. She's going back to Arizona where her family is, and a lot of her friends. She'll have people to help her with her little girl while her husband is in Iraq.
On Thursday night, before the Great Escape from Texas, we had our last hurrahs. Mark took us to the Alamo Drafthouse to see Be Kind, Rewind - it was hilarious and sentimental, and artsy enough to quell Mark (who is just about the biggest movie snob ever). We found our friends Katy and Sarah (like little sisters to Amelia and I both) and frolicked on 6th street. I watched her almost lick the building that houses Emo's, a very scenester nightclub that Amelia never actually made it to during her time here. We shared a peach-flavored cigarette from Sarah's 75-cent pack (don't tell my gran. I don't really smoke). We laughed at the skinny sorority girls wearing their teeny tiny uniforms. We let her dogs out in my yard, where they peed on my fence. And, in the morning, she came in to wake me up, told me that I didn't have to get out of bed, and said goodbye to my cats, and then to me.
I miss her.