** Ah, I can't believe I didn't post yesterday! I wasn't feeling well and could barely get it together to eventually go into work and get stuff done. :) Anyhow...
As you know, attending the weddings of my friends is one of my prime past-times. In a cruel twist of fate, my schedule for arriving in Scotland is going to force me to miss the wedding of my dear friend, Harold, and I'm a bit heartbroken by it.
I met Harold at a speech and debate tournament my sophomore year in high school and he was one of my first experiences of meeting someone that was universally respected on all sides of the tracks. He was serious, collected, discerning, a championship debater, and far far smarter than 17 year olds were supposed to be. He was, for all you can be in high school, sort of famous. I was totally intrigued by him.
He was who taught me how to drive and how to spin my pen around my fingers. It used to be our joke that I would count the number of times he said "How-ever" in a debate round (it was a lot). From him, I learned about all the modern philosophers. And I stood in awe of his moral and ethical compass which always seemed perfectly accurate.
At some point, Harold also became my boyfriend. But I was far far too fifteen years old and stupid to appreciate him. Something I've spent the last 13 years correcting.
He was the first person I was ever cavalier with about his feelings. I learned a lot about how I never wanted to make people feel ever again and have tried to keep that up. Until I met him, I didn't really know I had it in me to be so mean.
And to someone so universally respected as a wise man, especially by me.
Everyone said I was the biggest fool and that he would never ever forgive me. But Harold was always a gracious and classy guy. Luckily for me, he did eventually forgive me for being a stupid fifteen year old. And we've been wonderful friends ever since.
After he went away to college, we'd still hang out on breaks and sit in his car talking about the world until the wee hours. We'd go see movies-- he'd always kindly agree to see the artsy girly movie I wanted to see-- Amelie, once we even saw that awful Phantom of the Opera movie.
Out of all the people in my travels, he is still the smartest person I've ever met. He is one of the glowy people. He continues to teach me what it means to be a respected person.
I am sending love to him and his lovely bride on what will surely be a beautiful September day. Wishing I could be there to celebrate with you.