I liken friendship to my favourite pair of Australian Blundstone boots: durable, waterproof and as comfortable as the day is long.
Okay, sure my boots are Australian and my friends are not, but that isn’t the point. Besides, I am sure I will meet a nice Australian one day and we’ll be fast friends.
Whatever. Let’s not get caught up in semantics here.
I have had my black Blundstone boots for so many years now that I’ve lost count. They pretty much go with whatever I wear, or they are the first things I slip on after a day of being in shoes that hurt. They go where I go.
We hike together on the trail or off the beaten path. We sit in frozen hockey arenas and travel from the barn to the city, never complaining about the difference. They have been my dancing boots, my mud-runners and my “I can’t take this anymore” long-drive-with-loud-music boots.
They are broken in and creased just right. They fit me perfectly. No laces required.
Sometimes I take for granted those boots endure whatever I drag them through because they are dependable. I forget my boots need to be polished to protect the leather exterior and prevent cracks where the wear is showing.
Other boots can’t handle the strain or the endurance it takes to be with me. I have exhausted more than a few pair of imitation boots. Real Blundstones never fail you.
I am writing this column after having a communication breakdown with one of my closest friends. Never in my life have I sparred with anyone as much as I with this friend (who, I must point out, loves boots but refuses to buy the hype around my brand of boots, which is an obvious fault in their character, but not the reason for our current miscommunication).
I liken this relationship to my brand new burgundy Blundstones. I didn’t need another pair of boots per se, but I knew I would feel better if I had them in my life.
I was right, they make me happy, even if they cause me blisters. And I know every step we take together will get easier. Oh boy, are they hard to break in. And yet I refuse to give up. Once you find a pair of burgundy Blundstones that fit, you treasure them. Always.
I realize I’m not an easy friend to have. I am an extrovert on high or an introvert on low and even I cannot predict at which end of the spectrum I will be at any given time. I need attention and I need space in equal measure.
But I am trusted and true. I will go the distance. I will walk a mile in my friend’s boots just to know their story. I will trip them if they don’t open up. I have even offered to take the boots to anyone who hurts them (which makes my friends roll in laughter trying to imagine me in a fight, but that’s okay, peace is my superpower).
Basically, I love my boots and my friends. Heart and sole (punny, right?).