As was famously said in The Sound of Music, and probably in a million other places (But let’s face it: The Sound of Music is all that matters.), “When the Lord closes a door, somewhere He opens a window.”
Now, with that in mind, let me tell you about someone who has been my best friend for very nearly half my life. We met in high school, and he was immediately impressed by my card-playing etiquette, but that didn’t blossom into a close friendship until college. We attended the University of Kentucky together, and were pretty much inseparable until I up and got married when I was 21. (I hope that in your head “up and got married” was said with a bit of a Hatfield and McCoy flair.) Until I got married and moved to Colorado, we spent the majority or our free time together, took classes together (World of Peasants, y’all!), sat in on each other’s classes which we weren’t enrolled in (Russian History, y’all!), and basically drove everyone around us insane because we spoke our own language in which inside jokes were as common as the word “the” and it didn’t matter that no one else understood.
But then I moved to Colorado. And then before too long, he left Kentucky as well. He’s lived various places since then, but currently he is in New England – about 2,300 miles away. At one point he was on the West Coast – only about 700 miles away – and we made the most of that whenever we could. It is, after all, lovely when the closest thing to a halfway point is Las Vegas.
I mentioned yesterday that I love concerts and other live events. Well, more of the live events I have experienced have been with this friend than with anyone else. Our first concert together was Kenny Rogers at the Kentucky State Fair – many moons ago. That concert was life-altering, because Pam Tillis was the opening act. A couple of years ago, we created a sort of bookend to that first concert, by going to see Pam Tillis and Lorrie Morgan on their Grits and Glamour Tour in Jackpot, NV.
Hilarious! Powerful! In between we saw Celine Dion in Vegas, a hilarious brilliant celebrity impersonator show (also in Vegas), and we even saw most of the cast of Caroline in the City (Don’t remember that show? What’s wrong with you!?!) in Los Angeles. (That was a much bigger deal to me than I care to admit. Nothing hilarious about it, folks.) And then, back in May, I had my two closest friends by my side for Billy Joel in Madison Square Garden.
On Saturday, when I was on Ticketmaster listing my Fleetwood Mac tickets for an amount of money which I both hope will and hope will not be attained through resale, I saw this:
Look – I’ve said it before, I’ve said it again: I have the musical tastes of a very unhip elderly woman. When I was secretly listening to The Carpenters on my Walkman between classes in high school, maybe I wasn’t proud of it. But I am now. And I love Neil Diamond. My friend and I have more Neil Diamond inside jokes than you can shake a Song Sung Blue at, and I could easily pretend I like Neil Diamond for the “cheese” factor, but that’s just not true. I just unabashedly love Neil Diamond! So Soolaimon me!
I texted my friend, “Neil Diamond tour next year?” And his utterly perfect reply: “We are, I said!!!!!!!” (If you don’t get it, you really need to brush up on your Diamond.)
Long story short, he’s making it happen. We’re going to see Neil Diamond next year, in Ohio. So we get a trip “home” on top of it. I’m so unbelievably excited I can hardly stand it.
The point? Every time you think you’re Never Going Back Again, you get to say Hello Again. For every Landslide that brings you down, there’s a Heartlight making a happy glow for all the world to see. And just when it seems like the darkness is Everywhere, we get a reminder to Thank the Lord for the Night Time. No, not all Dreams come true, but for this Kentucky Woman, letting go of one awesome experience meant the opportunity for another.
Okay. I know that was bad. Watch a funny clip and forgive me.