Saturday, June 12, 2010

The One About Gleeful Alaska...

Before deciding to blog during a cold, rainy night, I was struck with two major realizations. First, I'm so exhausted that I have dark circles under my eyes. Second, it's FRIDAY! I swear it was Tuesday yesterday...

Exactly a week ago, I visited Caryn Kunz Lesuma in Fairbanks, Alaska. Caryn and I grew up in the same town but became friends in college. Besides having common Hawaii roots, Caryn and I shared the same faith, sang together in an a capella group, and collided into a number of adventures that only happen in movies. During my freshman year, I decided to choreograph a Samoan dance for our college lu'au. Days before the lu'au, Caryn hurt her arm rollerskating (probably on a date). With her arm in a sling, Caryn could not dance in the lu'au. Instead, she spent the night in my room hemming the dancer's costumes (while I napped) and single handedly drenched dancers with baby oil prior to the show. I think she even used her good hand to fill in as the bass drummer during our number...

My visit with Caryn and her husband Vaughn exceeded my expectations. I ate amazing quantities - bacon burgers, nachos, baby back ribs, 2 lbs of spaghetti, pizza, marshmallow cereal - spent an afternoon soaking in the Chena Hot Springs, visited an Ice Museum, watched an Arena Football Game, skipped church to watch a movie, visited the North Pole, took a semi-risque picture on Santa's chair, and ran a full mile in crisp Alaskan air. More importantly, we talked and exchanged experiences, insights, future plans and advice.

Still dazed with the adjustment of being back in SLC, I was excited to catch the season finale of Glee. I've been following the show religiously since it's pilot episode and am a proud Gleek. Despite the crazy theatrics of a baby birthing spliced into the dazzling rendition of Queen's Bohemian Rhapsody (yes, the show is that crazy!), I was moved by the group's distress at not placing at Regionals resulting in the Glee Club being disbanded. Realizing how much their relationships meant now that club was over, Schuester's advice provided no comfort.

''One day, all of you are gonna be gone, and all of this, all of us, will be nothing but a hazy memory.''

My friend, Vanity told me last night that friends resolve temporary voids. Once fulfilled, the friend is no longer necessary. I couldn't disagree more. My experiences in Alaska prove that my friendship with Caryn is still as nurturing as ever. Sure, the extent of our friendship has changed. I've only really seen her once or twice this year. But I measure friendships by the ease and ability to fall into a natural social rhythm already established. Last week, during those four days, I relived four years of college while created new memories that are anything but hazy. Thanks Car Ku.


  1. Don't forget about our pull tab gambling adventure! haha. It was SO wonderful to have you here. Can't wait to go back to the hot springs under the Northern Lights in Feb/March. Thanks for a great weekend. Love you Lai!!

  2. i like how you put that....'i measure friendships by the ease and ability to fall into a natural social rhythm already established.' THAT IS SO TRUE!! I believe the same thing. Even if you go a year without seeing a friend, doesn't mean you are not true friends anymore.
    ...and sorry, im sidebusting from caryn's blog. hehe!

  3. ha ha. k. i'm a sidebuster too. HI TAUALAI!! so nice to see you guys on saturday. i love that about friendships too. soo true!!