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Sisters, Sisters

I decided to head into the city this weekend. Hang out with my sister who for years lived right around the corner from me.

We went to the same university, lived in the same frat-house residence, hung out with relatively the same people.

We used to use each other for stuff.

"C, can you go to the bank for me?"

"A, can you pick me up from this (insert any downtown location from Tim Hortons to Whiskey Saigon)?"

We usually we end up being annoyed with each other's performance. She wouldn't have gone to the right bank. I would have been too late.

We didn't really hang out. We just kinda lived amongst each other.

She was literally a 5 minute walk. And I probably saw her twice a month. And only one of those times would actually have been a social visit.

I would always say the wrong things. She would always misinterpret what I meant. I would become annoyed with her overreaction. She was hurt by my complacency. We were growing in different directions.

We had always followed a similar path. When I got into high school, I started acting in the musicals. By the time she got there, the music teacher had taken a leave of absence and we were left with an eccentric English teacher who thought Phfifer's People - a comic strip from the 50s, I think - would go down well in as a high school production in small town Southern Ontario. We performed it together, with about 8 other people, confused. It was like acting out Dilbert skits for 2 hours. No one in the audience understood it and neither did we.

When I joined the field hockey team, I chose to be goalie because they needed one and I knew if I volunteered, they couldn't cut me from the team. When I graduated, my sister carried the torch and became the goalie for the team.

I went to Ryerson. So did she. I lived at OKH. So did she. And there had always been this pattern that we did the same things and were therefore, kinda so similar, we were like the same person, which I think is why I was perhaps so taken aback when I would offend her.

Since I have been back, I have seen her 5 times. We have been here for 2 months and if my math is right - which it isn't always - that is more than when I used to live around the corner from her.

I missed her and didn't realize it.

My mom said to me once over the phone when I'm sure I was complaining about how she was needy and immature that kinda stuck in my head.

"Well, soon you'll be living thousands of miles away from her and you won't have to see each other."

Those miles helped.

Now, we get together and recognize that we are different. She want very traditional things. I'm still trying to figure out what I want. Her world is one in which she has dinner parties and goes bridesmaid dress shopping and has the matching dining room set that originally was my grandmother's. I'm living in someone else's home and making plans to uproot myself again to live across the sea for a little while longer.

She eats right and counts her Weight Watcher points. I try to stick to a healthy diet but things go awry when you eat gyros for breakfast and sausages for lunch.

We both love hanging out with each other. We both worry about our parents. We both aspire to more travels around the world. We both know how to make each other howl.

I'm not just her big bossy sister any more. She is not just my little sister slave. We're adults. We're friends.

And soon, we'll be thousands of miles away again and we won't get to see each other.

And that's not even the half of it. Wait until I tell you about my littlest sister. She and I have grown to be very much alike. But that is for another day.


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