“Sometimes friendship is the only true love story there is.”
Today marks the 26th birthday of my best friend, Sam! That means we’ve known each for over two decades – 21 years, to be precise! We met many moons ago in primary one and have shared every aspect of our lives since. To celebrate, I wanted to reflect on some of my favourite memories of us and why she means so much to me, as well as a whole load of pictures that have been taken along the way!
I can’t imagine my life without Sam in it. She’s the first person I want to tell when something happens, no matter how big or small. She knows me inside out and can predict what I’m going to say before it leaves my lips. Our sense of humour is identical and often indecipherable to those around us. We’ve grown up together and experienced so much by each other’s side. We’ve celebrated birthdays, graduations and promotions together; we’ve grieved together and supported one another in times of need. We’ve seen each other at our highest and lowest points, and we’re still going strong.
Friendship is hard work. Of course, there’s been times we’ve fallen out and haven’t spoken for weeks. But, we could never stay mad at one another for too long. Like any relationship, it takes commitment and compromise to keep a friendship going for over twenty years. Knowing you have someone who has been by your side for most of your life, who you can trust so completely with anything, is the most rewarding thing of all.
Buffy the Vampire Slayer
Let’s start at the beginning, shall we? Buffy was probably our first mutual love. We were equally obsessed with Angel (circa Season 1/2) and often reenacted our favourite scenes from the show, like Buffy and Faith’s epic battle in the Season 3 finale. My Dad even carved us a (blunt!) stake to play with… There’s photographic evidence of us taking turns posing with this stake and fake garlic in the world somewhere… To this day, we still recite quotes to each other and say “if you can’t find third gear, don’t try for third gear!” way too much.
That photographic evidence I was talking about was taken in said caravan. Sam’s parents rented a static caravan in Skelmorlie when we were younger and we spent every other weekend there for ages. I have so many fond memories from the caravan that I hold dear to my heart and some not so fond memories, like a spider crawling over my head! We used to take Basil and Lucy, Sam’s wonderful dogs, for long walks in between watching movies and playing board games. We often headed into Largs to spend the day at the amusements, playing bowling and losing all our change in slot machines. We had our own little bedroom, which we personalised with collages sprawling the walls. We were obsessed with Pirates of the Caribbean at the time, so Sam had a poster of Jack Sparrow and I had one of Will Turner.
It’s become tradition for us to spend Boxing Day together and exchange gifts then. We’ve had so many brilliant festive times together – none more so than Boxing Day 2011! I remember this one so vividly because we got absolutely hammered and tried to go out in town with other friends. We didn’t last long before we had to call it a night. I went home thinking it was mega late, but it was only about 10pm because we’d started drinking early. I threw up in my driveway and swept in out onto the street while loads of cars drove by!
Sam and I used to love writing stories together. It’s something I still miss to this day. We would take turns sending the document to each other to add chapters, as well as writing together in the same room. We christened our main story Satin Sheets, which led to the sequel Satin Sheets: Fresh Bedding. We had so much fun letting our imaginations run wild; our stories definitely played a massive role in where my love of writing came from. We ended up with hundreds of documents, half of which still exist on a USB stick somewhere…
Growing up together, we naturally had the same taste in music. We spent our teenage years obsessed with the same bands like Panic! At The Disco, Fall Out Boy, My Chemical Romance, Avenged Sevenfold, 30 Seconds To Mars… are you sensing a theme here? This meant we went to loads of gigs together. Some of my fondest memories are from these, like seeing The Prodigy in Manchester (2015). To this day, we still try to go to gigs together, but it’s become a bit harder now I live in Edinburgh and she stays in Aberdeen. Undoubtedly, the best experience we had together was meeting Zacky Vengeance and Synyster Gates in The Whisky Shop, Buchanan Galleries. It was the most surreal moment of my life, considering we were besotted with them at the time!
We spent nearly every weekend together when we were younger, usually in front of a Playstation. We used to rent a different game every weekend to play, back when Blockbuster was still a thing, as well as a new movie to watch. We lived for GTA, but things changed when we tried Guitar Hero for the first time – we were absolutely hooked! We would play it every single weekend, without fail. I won’t tell you what we christened our band because it’s rude, but I can tell you it came from Channel 4’s Balls of Steel!
We developed a love for all things wrestling from a young age. This led to us watching it religiously on Sky Sports, including staying up late for the PPVs, playing all the Playstation games we could get our hands on, and writing stories based on the wrestling world. Sam was always a John Cena fan (she’ll probably kill me for revealing that), while I was a Randy Orton obsessive. We even got to see it live a few times in Glasgow – I think we both cried the first time we saw our favourites in real life!
Lord of the Rings
There’s something about Lord of the Rings that just enthralled us. We saw every movie in the cinema and watched the extended editions repeatedly, as well as the special features. We can even quote what the cast say in their interviews… We also played the PS2 games until we’d memorised every level. To this day, she is the Samwise to my Frodo.
Happy Birthday, Sam! I just want to thank you for making so many amazing memories with me and I can’t wait to make more. Also, please move to Edinburgh. Thanks!