The last day my best friend I see each other before she flies back to the States. We’re both having breakfast—spaghetti and waffles—with the full knowledge that we don’t know when we’re seeing each other next. Months? Years?
We are not saying goodbyes, not yet. We’re talking like we would any other time. She is helping me come up with a plot for my short story. I’m mapping out plots and characters on my place mat. She’s across me, pitching a story about a narrator that observes everything and only in the end reveals it’s a potted plant.
She says, “I wish I knew who I was saying goodbye to for the last time.”
There are several layers of meaning there. There are goodbyes that are temporary, goodbyes that are permanent. There are friends who are important to us now who will no longer be there later, and that doesn’t mean the friendship is any less meaningful.
I don’t know if she felt like she was closing doors. She is the kind to keep all the windows open in her home. I knew I wasn’t saying goodbye to her for the last time.
To be honest even when she left I didn’t really say goodbye.