front; Al and Dale circa 1997
Today, Dale would have been 42 years old. There would have been twelve days in which I was three years older than he was and he would have teased me a lot about that, but then he'd have his birthday and we'd be back to being two years apart.
Most years, my birthday would have been a quiet occasion, just as it is now. The end of January always meant paying rent and catching up on utilities, but by mid-February we'd have enough to do something. One year his company gave him a gift certificate to West Edmonton Mall so we booked a room at the Fantasyland Hotel. It was a fantasy room with a big yellow truck, and Dale and I slept in the box while Jamie slept in the cab. If I remember correctly, there was also a jacuzzi tub in the corner of the room. Out in the mall, we wandered around, went bowling, and tried fried alligator on Bourbon Street.
Those were the happier days with him. Of course, because he's been gone since 2002, he'll always be 35, and I am now nine years older than he'll ever be. Today I'll think about him on and off, but I probably won't acknowledge it in any other way. I am happy that I met and fell in love with him, and the path I was on led me directly to Bill, so who am I to question the universe?
I am SO happy that tomorrow is Friday, which is payday! I won't be getting a lot of commission, but it'll be enough to cover the last installment of house insurance, thank god.