There are some moments in life that you wish you could spend eternity reliving. For some people that might be a specific holiday, a birthday or maybe even the day you won a goldfish at the school carnival. For me however, it was this past summer when me and a group of 9 friends went to Grand Haven for Coast Guard. The day itself however, started out fairly rough. I was awaken by the low rumbling of thunder and the ever so pleasant howling of my dog. Groggily, I rolled over and checked my phone. To make the morning even better, I had six missed calls from six different people and had been added to a group chat that was blowing up by the second. If you know my friends and I, you know this is how we make plans. It was always a stressful event, full of actually figuring out something to do and much less trying to get a hold of everyone. I really wasn’t in the mood for all of that that day, but I still scrolled through the missed calls and called my friend Dash first.
“We’ve all been trying to call you all morning, you probably answer your phone a lot,” was Dash’s sarcastic way of greeting me goodmorning. Both our dads were best friends in high school, meaning Dash and I were destined to be too. But at this point and after 12 years of knowing each other, we treated and talked to each other more like siblings,
“I was tired, and it’s only 10:30,” I responded. Usually I would’ve been snotty back, but instead I just rubbed my eyes and turned my phone on speaker,
“Well, I think we’re going to Coast Guard today at 12 so you should get ready because I’m giving you a ride to Olivia’s,” he explained, I sighed and sat upright, looking out my window,
“It’s raining,” I replied. I knew I was probably being annoying and a debbie-downer, but at this moment, I don’t know if I quite cared.
“Not my idea, I’ll text you when I’m on the way,” Dash retorted and before giving me time to respond, hung up.
Surprisingly, my mom let me go and I rushed to get ready. What I thought was going to be a bust of a day actually turned out to be full of fun. Dash picked me up 20 minutes before he said he would and we all met at Olivia’s so her sister, who was also going with friends, could take us. We arrived there and found a place to go get some lunch and after being cooped up for what felt like eternity in the restaurant, the rain finally came to a stop.
“What should we do now? I don’t want to go to the fair part until at least seven,” Olivia said. We all agreed, fairs are twice as fun when all the rides and games are lit up. We had four hours to kill before then, so we decided to walk to the beach.
All the while, I was taking pictures and videos of my friends on my camera that I had gotten for my birthday. They all took turns trying to figure you out how to work it and taking random videos and pictures on it, insisting that I keep them all, “For the memories.” was Hayden’s way of explaining it. We danced around on the beach, watched Nate try to do a backflip and dipped our hands into the waves until soon the sun was setting and we could hear the fair music playing and see the lights from the rides.
After all getting our wristbands, we decided what to do first and who to go with.
“Me and Kaylee need to stay together and we’re riding the Fireball first,” Jenna called, I laughed but didn’t disagree, the Fireball was our favorite ride.
“Yup, me and Jenna are always riding buddies,” I added. Dash, Payton and Hayden looked over at us and then at the Fireball ride,
“We’ll go with them too.” Payton replied while everyone else headed towards the Zipper.
Surrounded by four of my best friends, laughing and screaming the whole time, were moments that I wish I could’ve stayed in forever. Contrary to what you might think, it was Dash who screamed the most out of us, which only made Jenna and I laugh harder. After we rode all the rides, we met up with everyone else at an ice cream shop. This was where the real adventure started.
“Uh guys,” Olivia started. She didn’t look as happy and laid back as the rest of us, instead she looked worried.
“What’s wrong?” Mia asked,
“My sister left.”
Everyone stopped what they were doing and looked up,
“What do you mean she left?” Dawson responded as he began to fiddle with his ice cream wrapper,
“She just left. She said she’s been trying to get a hold of me for an hour but none of the calls went through so she just left,” Olivia explained, you could tell she was starting to freak out.
Leave it to Dash to have made an ironic comment in this moment, “Hm,” he said, starting to laughing, “No wonder you and Kaylee are such good friends,”
I scoffed and rolled my eyes at him, “Why are you so funny? Just kidding, don’t be annoying right now,” We were an hour away from home with no way to get back, panicking, we all tried coming up with ideas.
“None of your guys’ parents can come get us?” Mia asked everyone, all to which everyone responded with “No”s and “Maybe two hours ago”s, which didn’t help our case.
“I have my permit.” Payton suddenly blurted out,
“ ‘Cause you have a car right? How does that in any way help us?” Nate replied, mocking him,
“We could steal a car.” Payton offered,
“You might be the dumbest person I’ve ever met,” Jenna added, giggling. We all stood there for a moment, trying to come up with anything to help us.
“Guys wait,” Hayden said, his face lighting up, “My brother and his girlfriend are here, I just saw them in line for the Twister, so they’re still here,” No more had to be said, we all left the ice cream place with Hayden leading us to find his brother, soon, we found them still in line,
“Hayden, bro,” his brother greeted him, “You guys leaving?”
“Yeah, with you,” Hayden cautioned. His brother made a face and looked at all of us, slowly realizing what he meant,
“Really? Why don’t you guys have a ride? And why don’t you don’t have a car yet?
“I’m not sixteen you idiot, is there any way you can please take us all back to Olivia’s?” Hayden pleaded, his brother looked over at his girlfriend, who didn’t look too pleased that we were interrupting their date, but she shrugged and dug into her backpack for the keys,
“Whatever, we rode this ride three times already. Let’s just go.” relief washed over all of us and we thanked them profusely until we got to the car. Although the amount of seating wasn’t ideal, we all made it back to Olivia’s in one piece.
After the guys went home, us girls grabbed Olivia’s laptop and I stuck my memory card into it. There were at least a hundred photos and videos all from today. While watching them, the bittersweet feeling kept hitting me that it was all but these moments on my camera and memories now. I scrolled to the last video on my camera roll, of course, it was of Payton. I pressed play, and the video started off with him almost dropping my camera, making my heart stop for a second.
“Alright,” he began, “I just ran a freaking 25k to this book store because I saw my baseball coach and he started talking to Dawson so I dipped. Also I was getting sick of being personal paparazzi for Mia and Dawson.” We all laughed, Payton’s way of explaining things always made the story ten times as funny, “So if you see this, Kaylee, or anyone. First of all, I know I mocked you for this camera, but I look pretty good on film so I can’t complain. Secondly, I love you all and if coach finds me, I might die so I gotta go.” and with that, the video cut black. We all laughed and I realized that I wouldn’t trade my friends or moments like these, for the world. And I knew this day would be one I’d remember for a long time.