FRIENDS... A short story

Do you remember the day you and your best friend met? Do you remember what you were doing, how you came to be in each other's lives? Do you remember the moment you realised that you and this person would probably be friends forever and would always have each other's backs? Let me tell you mine. 

Nessa and I met on a bright Belgian summer day over 13 years ago. That day for me had started with a road trip to The Netherlands with my father. The summer holidays had only just started and he hadn't quite figured out how to get rid of me yet, and thus he felt the need to drag me along to one of the gatherings of his Indian guru. 

At some point during one of the breaks, my father spotted the only other black people in the crowd and decided to introduce himself. It could also have been the other way around where they spotted us and came to introduce themselves. Either way, introductions were made and soon enough we discovered that we all originated from the same tiny West-African country (Benin) and also lived in the same tiny country (Belgium).  
So to recap, we're in The Netherlands where we meet Nessa's parents who are also living in Belgium. 

Next thing I knew, we were giving them a ride back to their home, seen as the parents had hit it off really well and kept marvelling at how much "we" all had in common. (Oh we also have a daughter around the same age who just moved to this country and doesn't know anyone yet). 

And there ladies and gentlemen
is how I met Nessa.

It took HIMYM how many seasons again to get to this same point? 🙄

It was hatred at first sight 🤣. God, I couldn't stand that girl. Yep, that's right, I hated my now BFF from the moment I met her. Though now I do realise that hate is quite a strong word to describe the way I felt back then. Then again, I was a pubescent teen that was just coming out of her goth-emo phase. We've all been there, don't judge! 

Back to Nessa! We did not hit it off right away, and Lord knows I haven't stopped reminding her since of my "hatred" for her at our first meeting. It's always a cause for some great laughter or amazing discussions whenever we bring this up.

Now ‘hatred at first sight’ could have been the end of it all were it not for our parents deciding to friend couple us and send us off together (as in Nessa & I) and alone (as in no supervised adults) on holiday to the other side of Europe.
 
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Of all the things I despise my father for this is one of the few decisions I am happy he forced upon me. That first trip Nessa and I took to Nice, is to this day one of the best of my entire life and one I fondly reminisce.

The pictures we took as young adolescents were absolutely atrocious, our styles were vomit inducing and we looked like... what DID we even look like???? But even though we look back at those pictures in horror every time one of us decides to randomly catch the other off guard with them (90% always me ), the memories of that trip are some of the fondest we share and happily relive over and over again.

We've been friends ever since that faithful summer and seen each other through all the usual teenage drama that comes with growing into adulthood and copious amounts of unusual shit too. We've spent countless hours remaking the world over the phone while hiding in the smallest closets in our respective houses. We've had a great many pee-in-your-pants moments of laughter and consoled each other after countless more heartwrenching periods of sadness and despair.  

Sadly, due to all the unusual shit we were made to deal with, it took almost 13 years before our stars, calendars and wallets could align again and we could share another travel experience together.

Malta got the honour of hosting our travel reunion and it sure as hell did not disappoint. Click here to find out what we got up to. 

MusingsElla Paradis