Monday, January 15, 2007

The Initiation of Sarahs

This past weekend, two Sarahs came to visit me.

I met Sarah and Sarah in high school, and we've been bestest friends ever since. The official reason they flew from Utah to California was to see my play, but the real reason they came was so that we could eat lots of food and stay up late to giggle about things (like my hair in the early '90s). Also, they really needed some chocolate covered almonds from Trader Joes.

Two days before they arrived, it was 80 degrees, but the weekend forecast predicted 60 degrees and possible showers. When one of the Sarahs (let's call her Blondie) called to ask if she should pack a coat, I gave her the bad news:

"Blondie, it's probably going to be cold this weekend. Like, 60 degrees."

"Um, Em? Do you have any idea how cold it is in Utah right now? 60 degrees sounds positively tropical."

I then realized that living in Southern California for 5 years has turned me into a weather wimp. This fact was further confirmed when, after dropping their luggage off at my apartment, we drove down to the beach for lunch, and while Blondie and the other Sarah (let's call her Brownie) continually exclaimed over how lovely the weather was, I sat shivering in my coat like the SoCal sissy I've become.

After lunch, we headed to Ikea. I had a sneaking suspicion that Blondie and Brownie would share my adoration of the giant Swedish warehouse, and all the oddly-named bounty it contains. My suspicions were heartily confirmed, and, as we wandered up and down the aisles, they joined me in exclaiming:

"I need this! But where would I put it?"
"I need this! But what would I put in it?"
"I need this! But what is it?"

That last exclamation was especially applicable in the stuffed animal aisle:

Over the next few days, we had many adventures, including (but not limited to) the following:

A meal at a Korean restaurant, where Blondie put her mission language skills to extremely impressive use, prompting several waitresses to come by our table and tell her (in Korean) how well she spoke their language. Later she told us (in English) that, when she lived in Korea, native speakers would sometimes tell her they couldn't understand her. "But I'm speaking Korean!" she would say (in excellent Korean). And they would reply: "I don't understand you because you are blonde."

A trip to Trader Joes to purchase Milk and Dark Chocolate Almonds, Organic Truffles, English Toffee (with Milk Chocolate), Cocoa Almonds, Pecan Pralines, Cinnamon Almonds, and Challah Bread. Due to Brownie's generosity, I have it on good authority that at least one of the packages of English Toffee did not make it back to Utah.

Closing night of my play, which prompted the following comment from Blondie: "I was totally into it until the last five minutes, and then I was like, huh?" (Which is actually a very apt summary of the production.)

Massages at a local day spa, where Brownie had a super chatty therapist, I had a mildly chatty one, and Blondie had a "deep breather."

A viewing of one of my all-time favorite films: The Initiation of Sarah. It's a 1979 made-for-tv movie in which a sorority girl has psychic powers, Morgan Fairchild has extremely fluffy hair, and Shelly Winters is so difficult to understand at times that the only possible explanation is that, during filming, she was drunk and quite possibly on several different kinds of hallucinogenic drugs.

Brownie's attempt to stuff her new Ikea-purchased queen-sized duvet into a very small duffel bag.

A trip to the beach on a gloriously sunny day, where I managed to snap this photo just as the first wave hit their bare feet:

We also had many delightful and deep conversations, during which we came to the following conclusions:

My pre-mission boyfriend was "creepy."

We can still remember almost all the lyrics to songs from the musical Chess, though the harmonies are a little iffy.

The gluten-free brownies I made "tasted like brownies."

10-day cleanses that involve fasting and taking herbs can lead to extremely unfortunate events.

I'm a much better driver than I used to be.

15 years later, we still love spending time together just as much as we did when we were in high school.




Azúcar said...

I still remember Brownie's excellent rendition of On My Own from Les Mis replete with the most expressive movements and interpretations ever.

You all look so great!

Blondie said...

A few of my own personal insights on this past weekend, if you don't mind:

Your husband and my husband are so much alike that it borders on the paranormal.

Eating is wonderful and I should try it more often.

The measure of a true friend is someone who can lovingly inform you that what you think is a heart attack is probably just heartburn yet not make you feel like an idiot.

Anyone who spends enough time with you will eventually develop sympathetic knee pain.

The "seven minute conversation lull" has no place in our relationship. After four whole days of nonstop chatter, we never ran out of things to talk about!

You're are totally fabulous!

blondie. . .again said...

Forgive my typos. I am suffering from a vacation hangover!

Azúcar said...

Hmm, if Blondie's husband, my husband, and Stuvey are all so much alike, I am officially terrified.

Emmie said...

Be afraid. Be very afraid.

I love your personal insights!

~j. said...

What a great time with cherished friends. I am jealous of your experiences involving Trader Joe's and Ikea and Beach and warm weather.

cotton_in_the_medicine_bottles said...

You know, they're building an Ikea in Sandy. I'm making my wish list.

Also, I have to agree with the Korean waitresses. I have had trouble understanding blondes speaking English.

Blondie's sis said...

I, too, am jealous of the Trader Joe's trip. I have stocked up on jars of jam and lemon curd, but those chocolate-covered almonds disappear way too quickly.

Thanks for letting us tag along on your four-day grown-up sleep over.

Emmie said...

Next time I visit Utah, I'll bring some Trader Joe's snacks to share.

Hmm. Maybe the reason I have trouble understanding myself sometimes is because I am blonde. (So nice to see you!)

Sis of Blondie,
There was talk of you receiving some of those chocolate almonds. I hope you're munching on some right now!

Brownie said...

I'm printing this up and putting it in my journal--it would be much more interesting for posterity when you are famous!

I'm not sure that I have talked that much straight SINCE we were in high school (and I faded out at about 10:00 while you two kept going until 2-3 am!)

Some of my favorite moments were hearing stories about people in the play and at church and then seeing the live version, telling stories that you were a part of and seeing you both listen like it was the first time you'd ever heard of such a thing (let us not quibble about ancient gossip!), Blondie's commmet upon arriving at IKEA "Em, don't take this wrong, but you are a WAY better driver than you used to be" (no more two hands clutched on the wheel with white knuckles) and Emmie's careful watch over her husband's responses and rating them on the appropriate meter! :)

Meg at Night said...

What a fun weekend you had! It made me think of all the fun times the 4 of us used to have together! I sometimes miss those good ol' days--going to to the drive-in in Sam's convertible, eating Chinese food and French Bread, talking FOREVER about every detail of our lives, mourning over thwarted loves, . . . .

In '93, I loved you three and thought you were beautiful. In 2007, I still love you babes and think you are more beautiful and amazing than ever!

BTW, Azucar---I still remember the "On My Own" rendition too. Classic and unforgettable! As is Emmie's dramatic, boarder-line suicidal rendition of "Ooooohhhhhklahoma!"

compulsive writer said...

I absolutely loved this post.

Still laughing over "I don't understand you because you are blonde" and crying over the fact that even though we are getting an IKEA (I have no room) we are not getting Trader Joe's anytime soon.