Ravi's family lived in London and he had a niece that was supposed to come visit. He asked me if I could possibly take her out with me one night and have some fun with her, since he was pretty sure she would feel stuffy hanging out with "old people" in their 40's the whole two weeks. I agreed, but I didn't quite get around to it right away. I may have mentioned in a previous post or two, but I'm at times painfully shy.
Finally Ravi and Chris invited me to go to Downtown Los Angeles to the shopping district with them. As we walked from tent vendor to vendor, past rows of flowers and carpet and fabric and clothes and knock-off watches, Kay and I walked side by side talking the whole way. She was as shy as I was, but about 5'9" and just beautiful. She had a lovely smile and a laugh that brightened every one's day. She was a lovely person inside and out. Her coal black eyes sparkled and shined. She looked every bit like a model with long, beautiful curly hair and a tiny frame. She had a very full and pouty mouth that most men went Ga-ga for. It didn't go unnoticed in Los Angeles that day. She was a lot of fun to be around, for a multitude of reasons.
The next day the family went to Disney Land and I was invited. I rode the rides side by side with Kay. Often she would reach out and grab my hand during a scary part of the ride. We rode in the same seat on the Matterhorn. We shot the bad guys in the Buzz Lightyear ride, and we had identical scores. She held tight around my neck when the boat plummeted in Pirates and she held my hand tightly during every twist and turn in Indiana Jones. By the end of the day we were as close as I've ever been with another girl.
Ravi had planned to take us to California Adventures the following day, but he and Chris had other things they had to do. Instead, they gave us the passes and I drove us out to Disney Land again. We had a blast, just she and I. We wandered all over the park, going from one ride to the next, feeding the ducks and talking to strangers. I took a ton of pictures of her as she tried on nearly every hat at the cart vendor. The one with the Minnie Mouse ears was the cutest one on her. She even talked me into something I never thought I would do with my insane fear of glass elevators. She got me on the Tower of Terror. I screamed my head off and nearly had a heart attack. I swore to never do it again, but I did it the one time just for her. Strangers offered to take pictures of us together. She took pictures of me on the rides and I took pictures of her jumping off of the benches in mid air. She bought me lunch and I threatened to do serious damage to a man who grabbed her bottom. It was possibly one of the best days I've ever had with a girl friend. In the matter of three days time, I grew to love Kay like she was a member of my own family. I even asked her to be my Maid of Honor if Pete and I ever got engaged. She was the sister I never had.
"I'd love to meet some American guy out here so I could get married and move to California. Then we could be together all the time!" My heart soared when she said that in her lovely London lilt. She had grown to love me, too.
That night when we got back to Ravi's house, we decided we would go to my favorite little Tiki bar in Long Beach, called Puka Bar (710 East Willow, Long Beach) and went to our prospective places to change for the night out. Chris made us a quick snack of some Indian delicacy I devoured and we showed the photos from the day to Chris and Ravi. Kay took the camera back and said "I don't really like this one picture."
"Don't erase it," Ravi told her. "We can erase it on the computer."
"Oh, Uncle," she said, "I really hate this one. Let me just erase this one." To her credit, she was making a terrible face in that one photo. She tapped a button or two and then stared at the camera with an open mouth, almost frightened. "Oh, Uncle! I think I did something wrong!"
"You erased them all, didn't you?" Ravi looked at her without a hint of surprise. Somehow he had known she was going to do that exact thing.
"I didn't mean to!" She bit her lower lip.
"That was irresponsible of you, Kay! Those weren't just your pictures, those were hers, too!" Ravi indicated towards me while he yelled at her. She ran to her room in tears.
"She meant to," he told me. "Don't let those little crocodile tears fool you, 'Manda."
I couldn't understand why Ravi would believe she had done it on purpose. I felt awkward and foolish sitting there, so I excused myself and went home to change into a dress. We had decided to dress to the 9's that night, just for the fun of it. When she came out in the little black dress she had picked for the evening, I was amazed. I knew she was lovely, but to be that stunning and NOT be a model should have been a crime.
On the way to Puka Bar, I made a phone call to a friend of Pete's. I told Mike that we were headed out for a drink and that he should come along. He'd been working and studying so hard lately that he hadn't had time to relax. I thought it would be a good evening for him - and I knew he was single. I should have known better than to try to set him up with Kay, though. Every couple I've ever set up on a date or even a meeting have always gotten married. Some people would say that's a good record... but they all ended up divorced, too. That's not such a good record.
"Manda," Kay said to me as we sat on bar stools side by side, "sometimes I get very stupid when I drink alcohol," she smiled. "Promise me you'll watch me like a sister would and you won't let me do something stupid."
"Kay, I promise I will take care of you like a sister," I said and she kissed me on the cheek. I whipped out my cell phone and took a quick snap shot of the moment, completely enjoying it for what it was worth. I'd never known anyone like Kay and I felt that I had found a Kindred Spirit of sorts. It's not easy for me to get close to people, and with her it was so instant I knew it was meant to happen.
We were inseparable that night - all the way up until Mike walked through the door of the Puka Bar. Kay thought he was adorable with the two inches she had on him in height. He wasn't exactly and ugly guy, either. They actually made quite a cute couple! The two of them leaned over me to talk to one another for a while before finally I stepped back and let things take their natural course.
Kay went home with Mike that night. I protested, I told Pete that I shouldn't have let it happen, and I was combated with lines of "She knows what she's doing, she's a big girl" and the like. Conscience got the better of me and I threatened to go check on her.
I was told not to.
I did as I was told.
When she left for the air port, I rode with them. After only a few days of knowing one another, we said a very tearful good bye and I bid her a safe flight home. I cried for a while in the car and Chris cried with me. Ravi drove, but I swore I could see a tear in his eye from the rear view mirror as we pulled away from the terminal.
We emailed back and forth for a while. I missed her like crazy. Already it seemed like a part of me was missing if she wasn't there. I truly had grown to love her like a sister in such a short period of time. I would have given anything to have her stay forever, but I knew that wouldn't happen.
"You have to tell me," she said in an email one day, "if Mike is being good. I trust you to be honest with me," she explained. "He and I decided to try a long distance relationship, and I know you won't let me down."
True to my word, I told her if he was and wasn't being good. Nobody understood why I did it, but when Mike reconciled with his pot smoking ex-girlfriend, I told Kay. They had a big fight, Mike never trusted me again, and Pete was very angry at me over the whole thing. It got to the point where Mike and I eventually had words over the whole thing and I nearly bit his head off. I'm an incredibly patient person, but he more than pushed me to the limit and I tore him a new one right in front of Ravi one day. Ravi, not known for brief visits, turned and fled in a hurry.
Kay emailed me a few more times and told me that she and Mike had decided to be friends, nothing more. She said she was thinking about coming back for another visit in a month or so, and that she would love to see me. I told her I couldn't wait to see her again!
That was the last I heard from her until 2 months later there was a knock on my door. I threw on some clothes and waded through the disaster we had from just moving into our new house to get to the front door. There was Kay and Chris. I didn't even notice the changes at first. I just saw Kay standing on my front porch and ran to hug her. I closed the door behind me on the way out, completely embarrassed by the mess in the living room.
Her nose was pierced. Her hair was shorter. Her NOSE was shorter. Her boobs were bigger. My God, this wasn't Kay - this was a shadow of the Kay I knew! I didn't care... Kay was Kay and I loved her no matter what she looked like. I missed the old Kay though - but I wouldn't dare ever tell her that. I wouldn't hurt her for anything in the world.
I told them I would come over in a little while, but I needed to get showered and dressed. Kay was insulted that I didn't invite her in, and they left feeling very disappointed. I never knew that until months later.
I knew Kay would be with Mike a lot. I knew they were more than "just friends" as she had said in her email to me. Mike and Pete were friends, it didn't take much for me to learn everything about Kay's visit, if I wanted to know or not. I sent Kay an email one day and tried to make peace.
"Kay," I said to her, "Mike doesn't like me very much and I don't want to crowd your time with him, so if there's ever a day you guys don't have plans, just let me know and I'll take you to do something fun, just the two of us."
"We're just friends," was her only response. I wrote her off that exact moment. I couldn't understand why Kay would feel the need to lie to me when I was the one who set them up in the first place. I wanted her to end up getting married to an American guy and moving to California every bit as much as she did. She had burned me though. She lied to me. I wouldn't put up with it, and I stopped trying to contact her. She never emailed me again.
Two weeks later Mike and Kay were married before the Justice of the Peace. Pete and I were not invited or even told about the wedding.
I missed Kay terribly.
But I don't put up with that kind of drama. I won't have lies told to me by someone I trust with my heart. I have NO DRAMA in my life. If that meat writing Kay off completely in spite of how much it hurt to do so, then I did what I had to do.
Ravi and Chris wouldn't talk to me for a long time after I wrote Kay off like that. Pete couldn't understand my rationality. People wondered if I were that flippant with all of my friends. I was called cold, calloused, mean spirited, heartless, and countless other words I'd rather not be associated with... but I knew what was right.
She's done some stupid things since then and tried to get Mike into a lot of trouble over a turbulent marriage. She's claimed Domestic Violence and had his badge taken away from him. She filed a police report stating that he held a gun to her head. Mike was arrested for that one, though it never actually happened. For weeks the drama filled the house, causing heart burn between Pete and myself. He would constantly come in with some new drama about Kay and Mike that he either heard from Ravi or from work. Finally I got sick of it. I couldn't take it anymore. I set forth a rule - I didn't want to hear their names mentioned again. Ever. She hurt me more than I ever knew was possible. I never trusted ANYONE like I had trusted Kay, and in such a short amount of time.
I'm pretty sure they're divorced now and she's probably gone back to England... but if she came knocking on my door tomorrow I would love her all the same. I would never trust her the same way, but I'll always love Kay.
Kay - if you're out there - I still love you.