Saturday, May 28, 2005

My Friend Bret

It started in the summer of 1983. I was at band camp and my friend Kirsten introduced me to this trumpet player Bret and his friend Shelby. It was love at first sight. O.k. it was for me. I remember going back to the dorm room that night and keeping Kirsten up talking about this cute guy Bret. I wanted him to ask me to the camp ball, but it didn't happen. But we were going to be in the same band at school the next year so I had hope.
I used to stare at him from across the band hall. I'd twist my earrings and think I was being subtle, but I learned later that he definitely knew and his friend Billy would make comments like "She's staring at you again." I ended up going out with another guy that year, Mike, but I broke up with him because I still had a crush on Bret. This upset Mike and I guess he was kind of jealous because he started a new thing that he called "Nail Capranica" where he'd chase Bret around the band hall and then try to hit him, you know, where it hurts. By the end of the year, I didn't care who knew about my crush. I made it plain as day and continued it through my 9th grade year and on into high school.
Though we never "officially dated" at all, we had a lot of fun together and eventually became very good friends. I used to write him notes that were 9 or 10 pages long. I even got him to write me back. And I still have his notes to this day. I think he may still have mine. It's a kind of dirt we have on each other. I have the "green notebook" and he has the "birthday box". I still have the drawings I did of his name written with hearts. The writings of woe and despair because he didn't love me back. The many poems that told of my unrequited love. Call me a sentimental pack rat.
By the time I became a senior I finally realized that we were never going to date. I ended up going out with Marty and another guy named William that year. (The one who dumped me the day after prom.) I wished Bret and I would have gone to prom together. He ended up taking an underclassmen he barely knew and I went with a jerk. Oh well.
In college we were music majors together and still having fun in band. He got serious about his religious calling and ended up pastoring a small Baptist church. I attended his church for a while until I fell away from all things religious. But we always remained friends. I shared a lot of things with him that I wouldn't or couldn't share with others. He was the first person I told when I found out I was pregnant. I know that he's continued to pray for me for many, many years.
After he graduated from college he left for seminary in California and we stayed in touch from time to time, but it's difficult to maintain a close friendship like that. He was busy with his studies and I was busy with mine and being a single parent. When Richard and I decided to get married, I asked Bret to perform the ceremony, which he did.
Although we don't get to communicate much any more and he's not just around the corner to hang out with, I still cherish the friendship we have. We have some wonderful memories that I relish. The time we kidnapped him for his birthday, the time he sprayed my hair green for mine. The many band trips that resulted in stimulating and entertaining conversations. (no, no, un-huh, quit) I started out thinking I was in love with him (puppy love it was), but have grown into loving him as a friend.
We may have had to kindly agree to disagree on religious matters but I still appreciate him as a friend. It's sad how life gets in the way sometimes and people fall out of touch as they go on with their lives. I'm still in touch with several people from high school, but it's just not the same. I guess it's a part of growing up.
I attended my cousin's graduation last night. It brought back a lot of memories. It's amazing how little we knew about life back then. How we so wanted to graduate and grow up. Now that I'm here, I'd love to have the simplicity of life back then. No bills. Great friends. Lots of fun. Those were the days weren't they?


Summer said...

What a nice stroll down memory lane. You and Bret are very fortunate to have that kind of friendship and memories!

Bret Capranica said...

A nice stroll indeed. You brought back a lot of fun memories. Those were great days.