One Thousand and One Memories.
My friends tend to ditch me a lot. Ever since we started high school, thing have been so different. The workload doesn’t bother me. The obnoxious teachers don’t really either. But the thing that really bus me is that my friends have seemed to forget the twelve years we’ve spent together. All in favor of the two months they’ve spent with their “new friends”.
Times like these always bring me to the same place. On the outskirts of the city’s soccer field is a thin forest. Running through that forest is a little creek that runs all throughout my hometown. That creek used to be a safe-haven for my friends and I. It had been years since we’d actually gone to hang out there, but at this time, a time of such loneliness and sadness (at least for me) my feet wouldn’t help but walk in the direction on the creek.
I entered the forest and approached the creek for the first time in what been months. What used to be a canopy of light shining through the leaves of the thick mossy trees was now a wasteland filled with litter and dead trees. Of course, I could blame the dead tress and the fast approaching autumn. But the litter had been the work of local potheads and teenage drunks.
I looked around at what had been the best place in the world back in the day. Everything about it was different, just like my life…well, maybe not exactly different. More like the ghost of what had been. The creek itself had a steady stream of garbage and dead leaves flowing right along with it. I sat down on the very rock that I had once jumped off into the creek. It had crude pictures of genitals spray painted all over it, but I still sat down and looked at the place that held one thousand and one memories.
This had been the very best place in the city for my two best friends and I when we were ten. Everyday after school we ran down here and ditched our backpacks, having the time of our lives walking along the creek. I smiled at the days that were brought back to my memory. The countless hours spent in the wood’s embrace. The first was one of my best friend’s (Elizabeth’s) very first kiss. It had taken place right here on the waterside when we were eleven. She and her “boyfriend” (since when you have a boyfriend at eleven, it isn’t actually a boyfriend if you know what I mean) had kissed, just a little peck on the lips, while my other best friend (Kaylin) and I had watched from the bushes, running out laughing after it had happened.
I remembered Kaylins scream when we came across a loose dog while walking along the creek. She had thought it was a bear, so she turned and ran the other way. Ever since then she had a tendency to avoid dogs. I giggled. Kaylin had moved in the summer, so she goes to a different high school than myself. I hadn’t seen or spoken to her in months, she I whipped out my cell phone and quickly said
“Heeeey . Guess where I am?”
And clicked send. She wasn’t one to text back right away, so the phone returned to my pocket while I waited.
Having been texting, I was reminded of the day Elizabeth got her first cell phone. We came here, of course. Walking across the log, which was really a fallen tree that happened to lie across the water, she dropped it in the water which resulted in the need for a new phone and years of teasing from Kaylin and I.
With a sigh, I thought of all one thousand and one memories that this forest held. All the times I’d fallen into the water, or off a log. Or when fallen branches had snapped beneath my very feet, plunging me into the three-foot deep water. All the times I’d returned home sopping wet, but still slept with a smile on my face because I’d had another one of those “best day evers”. Kaylin suddenly texted me back, saying
I smiled at her name flashing on my phone and said
“The Creek! :D”
This time there was no need to return my phone, as she texted back (for once) right away. All she said was
That’s it. Just “Cool”. Wow, things really had changed. I couldn’t help crying, because everything was different now. We were in high school, but everyone else had moved on. Moved on to better friends and cuter boyfriends. Expensive makeup and cheap hair dye. Sneaking drugs and alcohol and having “parties” on Saturdays. It seems that they hadn’t forgotten anything at all. Except maybe me, left in the dust back here in the past.
Hold on to the moment for as long as you can before your fingers slip. Because once it’s gone and passed, it’ll never come back. And then all one thousand and one memories will be worthless.