June is friendship month in my life. Unfortunately, I’ve lost too many friends in my twenty-something years, and it seems to be that June is the month for remembering those that I’ve lost. They’re sad events no doubt, and I’d rather that we didn’t have to have them of course, but they bring a silver lining – it keeps my friendships alive with those that may have drifted away. Even if I only see friends once a year – we are forever bonded by the person we all loved and lost. As I was thinking about how to blog about the weekend I started to think, these events are really a celebration of friendship, on all fronts.
So with that in mind, this weekend the Boy and I headed off to Kitchener to golf and remember our friend B-Rad Harries. Brad played volleyball for Western with the boy for one year. He was in a car accident June 6, 2006 caused by a reckless driver going way too fast, passing far too many people, and inevitably crossing the median and crashing into Brad’s car that was innocently driving along in the opposite direction. Alcohol wasn’t a factor. It was mid-day. Miraculously, Brad survived the crash. Friends that were living in London were able to visit him. His parents were able to tell him how much they loved him. For that I’m sure they will always be grateful. Brad was making a really strong recovery, but injuries run deep and complications are complicated. He passed away as a result of his injuries two weeks later.
How can I encapsulate the spirit of Brad? I can’t. But I’ll give it a shot.
Every year that the Boy played volleyball for Western I chose a new team favourite. From the rookies each year I’d pick the one that I loved the most. In the Boy’s second year I picked Brad. He was awesome. Adorable. Talented. Musically talented that is – just awesome. Not so much with volleyball – I mean he was better than most. Certainly better than you or me, but he didn’t play regularly. He was usually in charge of the video camera. But the great part about him – he always had a smile on his face when he did it. He was genuinely happy to be part of the team. It didn’t matter that he didn’t play. He was just happy to be there.
A bigger testament to his awesomeness, even more so than being my favourite. Brad passed away after his first year. He only had 8 months to make friends with the Western volleyball boys. This year was the fourth annual B-Rad Invitational. These boys come from all over Ontario, one came all the way from Saskatchewan this year, to remember their friend. You must be a totally awesome person for people you’ve known for only a short time to not let their friendship with you fade over time.
The weekend recap involved best ball golf. I am happy to say that Team Meaghan won (in our hearts) and that I made actual contributions to our team (hence the name). We ended up at 6 under – my best golf score ever! Turns out I love best ball – it’s so much fun, and far less frustrating.
We “camped” it wasn’t real camping because we didn’t use our tent. Turns out twenty-something single boys do not seem to know how to prepare for camping – and brought nothing. So we all crammed into a Yurt (a permanent tent-like contraption, pitched on a deck, with bunk beds). The boy and I used our air mattress and confirmed it does have a slow leak in it somewhere. By the morning my hips were on the floor and my head and neck were contorted in awkward angles. It’s now Wednesday and I’m still sore.
Finally we were reunited with friends that have spent the last 9 months in Australia. They got home the day before but cried “Jet lag be damned – we wouldn’t miss it!” They weren’t able to golf, but they did join us at another friend’s Buck and Doe (that’s country talk for wedding shower). We’re growing up, but keeping the memory and friendship alive of the great guy we lost along the way.
All in all an exhausting but really wonderful weekend. Blogging a shout out to B-Rad – you were my favourite rookie of all time, hands down.
Pictures to follow – but still staying at Mom and Dad’s… the camera cord is there, but the battery is dead. FOILED!