Friday, February 18, 2011

Past Times Behind

Sometimes I am surprised that anyone reads my blogs at all. I write what's on my mind and I don't know that it would interest anyone else. I do like to write as if I have an audience. I think that's just my style though, more interesting to me than if I was writing journal like entries. And though it surprises me that people do occasionally read what I write, sometimes it amazes me to discover who is reading what I write!

My latest entry was read and commented on by one of the people I mentioned in it. That just sort of blew me away. I had messaged her on Facebook to see if she could help me with a portion of my memories and when she responded she mentioned she had commented about me recently. Can I just say how good it feels to know people are thinking of you? I'm sorry I missed her comment when she posted it, but happy to go back and read it:

"while driving to work listening to an old Hall and Oats song.....reminded me of road trips with my friend Betsy and then of a hat and scarf someone made for her that was hideous, but she loved it because it was made with love! (she only wore it once for a picture that I know of....but she loved it just the same! Thinking of you today Betsy! Have a great day!

Now I am about to reflect on memories of time I spent with Debbi, oooooh, so many years ago, so many children ago, an entire lifetime ago. How does it fly by so fast? And where does it go? And more to the point, why can I remember so much of it and yet so little of what happened in my life yesterday or last week???

Hall & Oates. Love those guys. I am sure we were listening to Abandoned Luncheonette on 8-track. Tell that to your kids and you'll spend a bit of time trying to explain to them not only what an 8-track cartridge was, but possibly a cassette tape as well. And no, kiddies, the tape doesn't "stick" to itself while spinning around the gizmos inside the do-hickey or player. The tape isn't even sticky!!

Road trips. I love road trips!! It never occurred to me before but perhaps Debbi is why I love road trips. She's cute and funny and sweet and nice and probably the perfect person to be stuck in a car with for hours on end. To be honest, I forgot we did any road trips together, but of course we did!! Bear with me now, because all the facts are not still lodged in my feeble brain, but I hope I can make enough sense of what is to still there to write a comprehensive story.

One road trip took us to Eastern Washington and I am not sure why. It may have been a part of a bigger trip but I don't think so. Debbi had a roommate who couldn't imagine what people in Eastern Washington did for entertainment. Someone came up with an answer that went something like... "Yada yada yada... and sit around drinking Walnut Juice." For whatever reason that was hysterically funny so when we went to Eastern Washington we created a jar of "Walnut Juice" to present to this friend upon our return. Oh, we were so clever!!

Another road trip with Debbi took us to Ketchum, Idaho to pick up my belongings as I had decided not to return to Sun Valley for the Summer Season. I still sort of regret that decision. We partied with my friends for a day or two while there. The clearest thing I remember though, was a comment Debbi made about my friends. "They don't really laugh. They just say 'that's so funny' but they don't laugh!" It was an interesting observation and also true. I loved them anyway.

I went to visit Debbi during the hottest time of the summer when she had moved to Portland. Oh.My.Goodness!!! I had just bought a little pick up which some people I knew referred to as my F*ck Truck. Did I mention Debbi and I were both dating "bad boys" at this time? May have something to do with it. We drove that truck into the mountains out of the city heat and camped out.... not too successfully as everyone had the same idea. What I remember though, was swimming in an ice cold river and it was the most amazing feeling in the world. Getting out of the water was like being an ice cube in summer heat. Skin so cold it hurt, but the sun so hot it felt good.

Another time, another road trip, but the companion was not Debbi - the destination was Debbi. Colleen and I heard that the best place to see an upcoming eclipse was in Portland. It was one of those "special" eclipses that wasn't going to be around again for hundreds of years. So late in the day we decided we'd go to Portland to see it. We lived on an island in the San Juans so caught the ferry and off we went. I don't remember telling Debbi we were coming, but I hope we did as we arrived in the middle of the night. She was living with her grandmother, I think. The sky was overcast. We saw absolutely nothing, were dead tired and slept a while. And then we drove back home. Debbi - I can't believe you put up with me!

Here's a big secret... Debbi is the reason I quit school. Really. Debbi was going to college in my home town and I was going to school across the state. Debbi needed to take a summer class, so when I came home for summer break she moved in with me and my mom. I also signed up for summer classes. I decided I wasn't going to go back to school in Pullman and transferred to Western. One morning Debbi woke up late for a class and missed an important test. It was her final straw and she announced that she was going to withdraw. That may have been the last day to withdraw from classes without penalty. I thought is seemed like a good idea so I quit, too. All Debbi's fault!

Debbi's mom was opening a business in another city and Debbi was going to run it. The first place she lived there was in a small and cold travel trailer. On one of my visits to her in this town we played cards and drank wine. The wine was oh, so, good!! Do you remember T.J. Swan?? Yep, it was at least a full step above MD20-20 or Strawberry Hill. The choice of real aristocrats like us. When we finished the wine we desperately wanted more. I was broke. Debbi was broke. How to get more? Where there is a will there is a way, and I don't remember exactly where we found them all, but we did manage to find enough pennies (yes, actually pennies, not just a reference to money, but the actual coins we used) to buy another bottle of wine. Didn't the convenience store guy love us!!

Because it was back in the old old days when I met Debbi, things were quite different. There was no security gate at the airport and people could just wander around and go right up to the boarding gates. What a concept! And on nights when we were bored, that's what we did. We walked around the airport. I guess the mall would be the modern day equivalent.

If you are still with me I dare say you need to get a life. This blog is certainly too long and boring for anyone who wasn't actually there. I need to make a few notes here before I wrap it up, though. First off... it's not me in the photo of the crocheted hat & purse, same articles mentioned by Debbi on Facebook, and it was a purse, not a scarf. That was another friend at the time, Mike T. I did not sport a mustache of any type in those days. Secondly, many thanks to Debbi who unwittingly allowed me to recall all these fond memories. I had forgotten that we had actually spent so much time together and what a great friend you were/are.

And thirdly, I want to say that I know there is much more, some memories I am sure I will never recall, and others that will continue to come to mind long after I post this... such as taking my east coast cousin to Ocean Shores and playing Super Woman as we threw ourselves on the beds. What wild and crazy women we were!

Lastly... the title to this blog is the name of the actual first album of Hall & Oates. I couldn't find it anywhere in their discography but it's an album I own and adore (vinyl, yes!) I finally found why it's not listed anywhere:

"Prior to releasing their debut album Whole Oats, Daryl Hall and John Oates had sketched out some demos, originally released as the Past Times Behind collection (since reissued under a variety of titles). Those recordings found them earnest and tentative, in the throes of their folk-rock phase, and they led to Atlantic signing the duo..." Full article.

1 comment:

  1. Betsy, quite an interesting blog today! Maybe because you and I are of the same era ;) I have to confess though, I kept looking at the picture and all I could think of was "if that was Betsy, she sure needed to bleach that 'stache" LOL