“Finally, the day has arrived”
Saturday, July 29, 2006. The day we were due to leave for Africa from the Appleton airport.
Val’s boyfriend came home from Germany the evening before. She insisted we pick him up at the bus and that he spend the night at our house instead of with the friend he was living with. He was unusually quiet during the car ride home. Later that night, after Himey and I were in bed, the boy broke up with Val. He had gotten back together with his previous girlfriend while they were in Germany together with the rest of their German class.
Val didn’t sleep the entire night, just laid in her bed and cried.
Not quite the start to the trip that we were hoping for. I don’t remember if Val did anything that morning except to continue to cry in her bed. I wanted to just go in and shake her, say to her, “get over it. This trip is going to be so much bigger than any of us and you cannot let breaking up with your boyfriend ruin it.” Instead I almost ignored her, until it was time to pile in the car.
Her now ex-boyfriend was still at the house when we left; his friend was going to pick him up shortly. I gave the boy a hug before we left. Even though Val’s heart was completely broken and laying in pieces inside her chest, I couldn’t blame him. Things happen. I could get all philosophical, but I won’t right now. Let’s just leave at “things happen”.