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Failure to Launch

November 23rd, 2011 by admin

Willow is dashing to catch her bus. Last-day-of-work drinks took forever. In her mind, she is ticking over the list of things to do before she moves out of Wellington next weekend. She needs to wheedle boxes out of the liquor store, confirm her ferry ticket, acquire an even more luxurious carry case for her cat Cilla. Just as she hits the bus stop, she draws up short. “Daria?”

A woman looks up at her and flutters long lashes through quirky spectacles. “Willow? Helll-oooo! How are you! It’s been ages!”

Willow stammers, “I’m great – a boyfriend – it’s serious – I’ m moving to the South Island.” She is just about blushing down to her toes, confronted here with a friendship that has failed to launch.

Daria is one of those Wellington women who is as utterly lovely as she is utterly busy. They met in passing about a year ago at a local science conference. The week after, paths crossed again at a friend’s drinks party. They chatted for hours. It was almost like a new romance, feeling the charisma of a fresh friendship. And then…

Daria went away for the holidays with her stepkids. Willow had some drama, and then her all-consuming new relationship. They ran into each other two or three times, the nascent friendship resparking each time. Surely, there would be time to really be friends later on. After the school holidays, the film festival, the trip away for the other friend’s wedding.

Except there isn’t. Daria’s pretty face saddens as this hits home, and Willow feels even worse for falling through on her side.

“You should come visit! I’ll be living in a farmhouse. Come down for the Steampunk weekend, it’s right nearby –oh, this is my bus.”

Daria smiles and waves as Willow, inevitably, goes.  “I’ll find you on Facebook this time!”

It’s better than nothing.

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