Last week, I got pizza and beer with one of my friends from college, Ben. He lives less than a half hour from me, and we meet up about once a year—mostly whenever I realize, “hey I haven’t seen Ben in a year” and then I text him and tell him that.
With us, it’s definitely a case of we’re just busy. But we make time to see each other, even if it’s just once a year. (We did drive to New Jersey together two years ago and that was certainly interesting. Mostly because he drove me in my car down there.)
We met at the bar near our old college because it’s a decent halfway point for us to meet. It was a Monday, so the bar definitely wasn’t raging, and we grabbed seats at the bar.
One thing I love about that bar is there’s a pizza place right next door that’s connected with a doorway. So you can get a drink, go get a slice of pizza, and bring it back into the bar. During the fall semester of my senior year, I’m pretty sure I drank a keg of Mackenzie’s pumpkin beer and had a large pizza spread out over the many, many Thursdays we went to the bar. (We were those people that went at 8:30 p.m. to get a table and leave when everyone else came in around 11:00 p.m.)
Ben and I got beers and then got pizza: French fry for me—my favorite—and mac and cheese for him. They’re big on speciality pizzas and always have a good rotation of ones available that you can get slices.
We caught up about our lives, what we did this summer, and shared the same confusion about the new benches they installed in the bar along the wall where the high top tables used to be. According to our bartender, it’s to free up standing space on busy nights between the bar and the tables. It just looked really weird because we were so used to all of the tables on the left side.
She asked us what we were doing now, since Ben and I said that we used to go to Western New England. We explained the “turf war” between WNE and Springfield College, just down the road. The bar is diagonal from WNE across the road, so it’s always 90% WNE kids. There were a few nights my senior year when the Springfield kids showed up, and we weren’t too happy.
I became friends with Ben during the end of my sophomore year; he was friends with my ex-boyfriend. He’s been a good friend over the years, was there during my breakup, and one of my reliable friends. We said that we’d make more of an effort to see each other more—maybe twice a year instead of just once.
Plus it’s always nice to go back to the old stomping grounds.